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News, Santa Monica, Police Department

Married Couple Confess To Stealing Thousands From 99-Year-Old Veteran

Posted Jun. 26, 2013, 12:12 pm

Brenton Garen / Editor-in-Chief

A married couple has confessed to befriending a 99-year-old World War II Veteran then stole about $2500 from his bank account, according to the Santa Monica Police Department.

SMPD investigators were assigned to this elder abuse/financial crime case earlier this year on March 15.

Sgt. Richard Lewis said the victim told investigators that he met a woman by the name of Susan Taylor in October of 2012 as he was exiting the Vons grocery store located at 710 Broadway in Santa Monica.  

The elderly man said he felt sorry for her as she was sitting on the ground outside the store, Lewis said.

“He offered to pay her $20 to assist him with his shopping from that point on and she accepted,” Lewis said. “As the victim’s health deteriorated, he was no longer able to drive and asked the suspect if she could drive him to and from the store.”

The suspect told the veteran that she did not drive, but her husband, identified as Jim Taylor, would certainly do it, Lewis said.  

“Both suspects began working for the victim as they assisted in his shopping and various transportation needs, which included the victim providing them with two separate loans,” he said. “During the course of their business arrangement, the victim entrusted Jim Taylor with his debit card and pin number. On the days where the victim needed groceries, he authorized one of the suspects to withdraw $200 only. The victim noticed that the suspects were taking $300 and when he questioned the extra hundred dollars, he was yelled at.”

Lewis said the victim contacted authorities and an investigation was initiated, which revealed that the suspects made at least 25 unauthorized withdrawals from the victim’s account totaling approximately $2,500.

Lewis said investigators contacted the suspects on April 9 and obtained confessions from both.  

The case was presented to the City Attorney’s Office who filed one count each of 368(e) PC (Elder abuse by caregiver).  Both pled out and received probation and restitution for the above charge, Lewis said.

The suspects have not been ordered by the court to be booked as of the time of this summary.

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