TANNERSVILLE -- A former maid in the Poconos was back in court on Tuesday facing more theft charges.
Police say Nancy Rivera took thousands of dollars in jewelry from homes that she cleaned, and pawned the stuff for cash.
Rivera was first charged with theft in May when she allegedly stole jewelry from the home of a police officer in the Poconos.
Police now believe she stole from more than a dozen homes, and Rivera was back in court again to face those charges.
Rivera attempted to cover her face and dodge our cameras on her way out of court in Tannersville. The former employee of Merry Maids was hit with even more theft charges in Pocono Township.
Police say she'd been stealing from the homes she cleaned for quite some time.
"It's taken a while to get to this point because we've been going through all the victims, all the houses, everything, and where she's been to try and wrap this all up," said Pocono Township Police Officer Christopher Gupko.
Rivera was first charged with theft in May when she allegedly swiped jewelry from the home of a Pocono Mountain Regional Police officer.
Police now say Rivera also cleaned out a home in Swiftwater. The two rings she's accused of taking are valued at more than $2,600.
"The jewelry was sold to the gold places and I assume it's all melted down at this point. They only have to hold it for several days until they can get it sold and melt it down," said Gupko.
These thefts led to a lengthy investigation and police found several other victims.
In Pocono Township alone, Rivera allegedly stole 17 different items of jewelry, and police say there could be even more cases.
Court paperwork shows Rivera admits she stole the jewelry because "times were tough" and she needed the money to take care of her young daughter.
Inside the courtroom, Rivera broke down in tears during her preliminary hearing, saying she wanted to move the case forward and get this over with.
Officer Gupko says, "She has shown genuine remorse and she knows she is in the wrong, and I believe she's attempting to make an effort to make up for what she's done."
Rivera no longer works for Merry Maids in Saylorsburg. She represented herself in court and gave up her right to a preliminary hearing.
Her case is now forwarded to the court of common pleas.