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May 31, 2024 by |

San Francisco Bay Area Financial Elder Abuse Attorney: Relative Of Elderly California Millionaire Allegedly Murdered By Caregiver Reveals How She Became Target


Victim Reportedly isolated Herself From Others

Reverse Mortgage And Other Tricks Used To Gain Control

Victim Estranged From Family At End of Life

Many California seniors live in homes whose value has increased enormously over the years at the same time that their income is stagnant.  Some of these seniors find themselves in dire financial straits but do not want to sell their homes.  Reverse mortgage lenders and other predatory schemers target older persons in this perilous situation where their income is not keep up with increased cost of living expenses.  The wrongful taking of a senior’s property through any scheme, and any assistance in that taking, is a crime and grounds for civil liability of the person doing the taking and anyone assisting him or her. California Penal Code § 368 and Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.30 (definition of financial elder abuse).   California broadly defines what constitutes financial elder or dependent adult abuse:

(a) “Financial abuse” of an elder or dependent adult occurs when a person or entity does any of the following:

(1) Takes, secretes, appropriates, obtains, or retains real or personal property of an elder or dependent adult for a wrongful use or with intent to defraud, or both.

(2) Assists in taking, secreting, appropriating, obtaining, or retaining real or personal property of an elder or dependent adult for a wrongful use or with intent to defraud, or both.

(3) Takes, secretes, appropriates, obtains, or retains, or assists in taking, secreting, appropriating, obtaining, or retaining, real or personal property of an elder or dependent adult by undue influence, as defined in Section 15610.70.

If you or a loved one is a victim of elder or dependent adult abuse or neglect in the San Francisco Bay Area call us today at (415)441-8669. Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

Murder/Financial Elder Abuse Case[1]

Two years ago, sheriff’s deputies found a 96-year-old California woman strangled inside her home in what authorities believe was a case of murder for hire/financial elder abuse.  According to the victim’s stepchildren, the wealthy 96-year-old woman made herself an easy target by isolating herself with a “mistrusting” attitude and fear that those around her wanted her money.  Her caregiver has been charged with elder abuse, fraud and manipulation of legal documents in relation to her death, according to the local Sheriff’s Department.

Since he had become estranged from her around 2005, the victim’s stepson said, his former stepmother “might have been more inflicted with memory problems and dependent on other people.”  It was “painful” when the victim “did not want to keep in contact” because “she always thought that the only reason we would be checking on her would be to try to get into her will,” her stepson’s wife said.  “I never would have thought that us not doing something would have us not know that she was in that type of trouble,” she said. “She had enough money that we just thought she would be able to take care of herself … we forgot that when you are in your 90s, you don’t always have the mental faculties to do that.”

Contact Us

The reported case illustrates the danger of letting strangers work their way into an older person’s life.  We have seen cases come through our office where we believed the victims were fatally over medicated in order to get their property. Stay involved in any senior loved one’s life so a stranger does not have the opportunity for this kind of theft and exploitation.  If you sense any kind of abuse of an older loved one in the San Francisco Bay Area, call us right away.  Ingrid M. Evans has years of experience in representing seniors and their families against abusers of any kind, including in-home caregivers.  You can reach us at (415) 441-8669, or by email at Our toll-free number is 1-888-50EVANS (888-503-8267).

[1] Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the case in any way.

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