Saturday, March 2, 2013

Chemung county continues persecuting Sara and Gary Harvey

It seems the tortured imprisonment of Gary Harvey in Chemung County New York, will never end. Mr. Harvey who suffered a head injury as a result of a fall in his home seven years ago, has been a real cash cow for not only the hospital he is confined to, but also for numerous agencies, attorneys and predatory guardians. As long as Mr. Harvey can be owned and controlled by the predators, his safety, welfare and general overall health will continue to deteriorate. But there is money to be made! And Mr. Harvey has been a virtual ATM for those who continue to hold him hostage.

Mr. Harvey has been billed more than 1 million a year in medical and rehabilitation costs billed to his wife’s insurance. Much of this was for rehabilitation services that never occurred. State agencies and agents are availing themselves of Mr. Harvey’s social security checks, and any funds supplied by the Veterans Administration along with Medicaid funds. You can see it is not in the financial interests of the predators involved to release Gary from his imprisonment.

To understand just how vindictive, how callous and vicious these individuals can be, please note the letter received shown below. Keep in mind this is Sara Harvey’s husband who is being abused here, and this letter is in regards to his birthday visit from his wife:

P.O. BOX 588
ELMIRA, NEW YORK 14902-0588
(607) 737-5403 FAX (607) 737-5500
TO: Theresa Duffy, SJH and CIS
FROM: Elizabeth Beckwith, Adult Services
RE: Gary visitation
Deretha Watterson, LCSW-R Kellie Lowman

Commissioner Children and Family Services

During Gary’s visit today, 2/27/13, Sara Harvey is permitted the following actions:

  • Kiss Gary two times on the cheek

  • Hold hand under the following conditions:

  • Hands are visible at all times by the monitor (CIS staff person and camera).

  • Sara’s hand should NOT be moving at all when holding Gary’s hand.

Please note that the above two actions shall only be permitted under the above conditions. IF Sara deviates at any time during today’s visit from these stated expectations, then all touching should stop immediately.

These permitted actions cease at the end of the visit today.

Mrs. Harvey has waged a never-ending battle to not only free her husband from this horrendous abuse, but most times just to have access to her husband. Visitation occurs only under the supervision of an armed guard and a nurse. Most times she is not allowed to touch him or comfort him in any way. She is not allowed to take pictures of him in his chronically deteriorating condition to document the abuse and neglect this man has suffered at the hands of predators who operate under the protection and facilitation of the probate courts.

Full Article & Source:
Chemung county continues persecuting Sara and Gary Harvey

See Also:
Still Troubled by Terri Schiavo's Death, but Inspired Too

Terri Schiavo Life & Hope Network

Terri Schiavo's Brother, Bobby Schindler, Petitions Court to Intervene in Guardianship Case

The Dictators of Non-Compassion: Gary Harvey Case and the Unexpected Twist

Financial planner accused of elder abuse

A Newbury Park financial planner was arrested last week on suspicion of embezzling money from an elderly client.

In October 2012 the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office received a report alleging that Rod Hormell, 56, had embezzled money from an 89-year-old client.
The report came from a relative of the client.

Full Article & Source:
Financial planner accused of elder abuse

Friday, March 1, 2013

Police helped wealthy woman accuse local lawyer of theft

PORTSMOUTH — While an elderly woman endorsed a new will and trust last May, leaving the bulk of her sizeable estate to a city police officer, she accused her former lawyer of stealing from her.
The woman, Geraldine Webber, died Dec. 11, 2012, at age 94, seven months after she was videotaped for an hour and 20 minutes signing a new trust giving police Sgt. Aaron Goodwin her waterfront home, stocks, a bond and a Cadillac. The will and trust are being contested by Portsmouth attorney Jim Ritzo, who says he managed Webber's estate for the previous 25 years, that her wishes remained consistent and they did not include Goodwin.
Ritzo alleges in the county probate court that Goodwin exerted undue influence over Webber and that she was incompetent when she agreed to give the police sergeant power of attorney over her estate, as well authority to make her life-and-death medical decisions. Evidence in the case is expected to include the video of Webber signing her new estate documents on May 2, 2012, when she called Goodwin her “second son,” made sexual advances toward her new lawyer, Gary Holmes, and alleged her old lawyer, Ritzo, stole checks and money from her.
Ritzo denied the allegations Monday, saying he's “never taken a dime” from Webber, including for the quarter-century he managed her estate.
“It's a classic sign of Alzheimer's (disease) to say people are stealing from you,” said Ritzo, who had petitioned the probate court to have Webber evaluated for competency prior to her death. “I think it's very simple, just let the judge watch the video and decide.”

Full Article & Source:
Police helped wealthy woman accuse local lawyer of theft

Medicare paid $5.1B for poor nursing home care

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Medicare paid billions in taxpayer dollars to nursing homes nationwide that were not meeting basic requirements to look after their residents, government investigators have found.

The report, released Thursday by the Department of Health and Human Services' inspector general, said Medicare paid about $5.1 billion for patients to stay in skilled nursing facilities that failed to meet federal quality of care rules in 2009, in some cases resulting in dangerous and neglectful conditions.

One out of every three times patients wound up in nursing homes that year, they landed in facilities that failed to follow basic care requirements laid out by the federal agency that administers Medicare, investigators estimated.

By law, nursing homes need to write up care plans specially tailored for each resident, so doctors, nurses, therapists and all other caregivers are on the same page about how to help residents reach the highest possible levels of physical, mental and psychological well-being.

Not only are residents often going without the crucial help they need, but the government could be spending taxpayer money on facilities that could endanger people's health, the report concluded. The findings come as concerns about health care quality and cost are garnering heightened attention as the Obama administration implements the nation's sweeping health care overhaul.

Full Article & Source:
Medicare paid $5.1B for poor nursing home care

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Woman gets 30 years for exploiting elderly, disabled adults

A DeKalb County woman was sentenced to 30 years — 20 behind bars — for exploiting elderly and disabled adults in her care.

Bobbie Ward, 50, was also ordered to pay $14,229 in restitution to one of the victims, according to the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office. Ward, a former Cedar Grove Middle School secretary, was convicted last month on 21 charges stemming from her treatment of six adults in her care over a five-year period.

The charges included neglect of disabled and elderly adults, exploitation of disabled and elderly adults, false imprisonment of an elder person, forgery in the first degree and 13 separate counts of identity fraud.

“This sentence sends a resounding message that elder and disabled adult exploitation will not be tolerated in DeKalb County,” District Attorney Robert James said in emailed statement. “She relentlessly preyed on vulnerable adults and exploited them for her own personal financial gain.”

Prosecutors contend that Ward took disabled and elderly adults into her home and then housed them in unsafe and unsanitary conditions, while proving inadequate food and medication. She then used their identities to make a profit for herself.

One elderly victim who had been locked in his room escaped from her house through a window, breaking his foot, James said. Ward took money from the victims’ bank accounts and forged their names on government checks without their permission, according to evidence presented in court.

Ward was first indicted on the charges in 2011, then re-indicted last year when more victims were discovered. She was arrested March 8, 2012, on her birthday, for failing to show up for a court appearance and has remained jailed since then, records show.

Full Article & Source:
Woman gets 30 years for exploiting elderly, disabled adults

Elder Justice Act promotes awareness of elder abuse

DARKE COUNTY – State and local officials are focusing on establishing safeguards and promoting awareness of elder abuse, which has becoming a growing topic in recent years.

Last week, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine joined state representatives Wes Retherford and Mike Dovilla to introduce the Ohio Elder Justice Act, which is intended to strengthen the existing Adult Protective Services Law and improve the response to elder abuse incidents.

“We need to do everything we can do protect our senior citizens from both physical and financial harm,” said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. “We are pleased that representatives Dovilla and Retherford are working towards turning these recommendations into law.”

Full Article & Source:
Elder Justice Act promotes awareness of elder abuse

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Judge to review conservator fees, halts future appointments

Davidson Probate Judge David Randy Kennedy has halted at least temporarily new appointments to the Public Guardian and says he will personally review past billings for possible abuses.

Kennedy announced the freeze of new appointments to Public Guardian Jeanan Mills Stuart in a letter sent Friday to Metro Council members.

“To the extent she has been compensated in amounts now deemed excessive, the ultimate responsibilities for approval of her fees rests with me… In other words the buck stops here,” Kennedy wrote in the three-page letter.

Kennedy’s action follows a Tennessean report that detailed how Stuart routinely charges her full legal fees of up to $225 an hour for non-legal services. She has billed some of her wards $400 to attend their funerals. And she billed another ward $986 to accompany her to a performance of Handel’s Messiah, and $1,282 for a shopping trip to Dillard’s, Walgreens and lunch.

Full Article & Source:
Judge to review conservator fees, halts future appointments

See Also:
Judge David Randy Kennedy's Written Response to The Tennessean's Questions

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Firing bad judges

You haven't heard the last of Cook County Circuit Judge Cynthia Brim, who was ejected from her courtroom during a bizarre rant, got arrested for throwing a set of keys at a deputy sheriff and was acquitted of misdemeanor battery after pleading insanity.

She's still not allowed in the courthouse without an escort, but she hopes to return to the bench soon, and why not? In November — eight months after her arrest — voters awarded her another six-year term.

Voters had no way of knowing it was the fifth time she'd been hospitalized for a mental breakdown after she stopped taking her meds. But they had plenty of other reasons to fire her. She'd been found unqualified by local bar associations who evaluated her in this election cycle, and the one before, and the one before that. Each time, she won another term.

Yes, the voters have spoken. Somehow we don't think they were saying, Great job, Judge Brim! More likely they got to the bottom of the ballot, where 57 unfamiliar names awaited an up-or-down vote, and punted.

They voted yes on all of them. Or maybe no. Or they didn't vote at all. It's been 22 years since voters tossed a judge from the bench, and it's not because Cook County has only good judges. It's because the system protects the bad ones. It must be changed.

Full Article & Source:
Firing bad judges

Monday, February 25, 2013

Disabled Veterans Fight VA Appointed Fiduciaries

Across the country, disabled veterans’ families are in bitter battles with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, trying to oust VA-appointed fiduciaries from their lives.

Two attorneys, Doug Rosinski of Columbia, S.C., and Katrina Eagle of San Diego, have taken on VA in cases involving allegations of bureaucratic mistreatment. Both said regional program managers sometimes overlook the misdeeds of paid fiduciaries while coming down hard on veterans’ relatives who do the work for nothing.

The agency’s policy is that family members get priority in fiduciary appointments, but it does not always work that way. And while many family members serve successfully as fiduciaries for disabled veterans, some get into trouble, often because of a lack of training or knowledge of the rules, R.Dean Slicer, a top regional program manager in Indiana, boasted in a November 2010 email to an Indianapolis bank official that they would have “fun” battling with a war veteran’s daughter. Carolyn Stump, a registered nurse, was trying to free her seriously ailing 81-year-old dad, William Evans, from a fiduciary at the bank who had tangled with the family and had recently been slow paying some bills, according to court records.

Slicer, who last year was promoted to oversee the fiduciary program in 13 states, declined to comment.

“It is very unfortunate that the VA gives any one person that much power,” said Stump, who is also her father’s medical caretaker and state court-appointed guardian.

Disabled Veterans Fight VA Appointed Fiduciaries

Recommended Website: CANHR

Since 1983, California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform (CANHR), a statewide nonprofit 501(c)(3) advocacy organization, has been dedicated to improving the choices, care and quality of life for California’s long term care consumers.

Through direct advocacy, community education, legislation and litigation it has been CANHR’s goal to educate and support long term care consumers and advocates regarding the rights and remedies under the law, and to create a united voice for long term care reform and humane alternatives to institutionalization.


Sunday, February 24, 2013

Tonight on T.S. Radio: Legislation Expanding Human Trafficking of the Elderly

Our guests this evening will be Leonie Rosenstiel and Marcia Southwick.   

New Mexico is reviewing several bills regarding guardianship. At issue this last week New Mexico bill SF 112 which would have expanded the grip of predatory guardians beyond death for a minimum of six months. Opponents suggested that the way this bill was worded also required that any will or trust that was set up had to be tested in court before being declared valid. They said it was treading on territory that properly belonged to the Uniform Probate Code. If passed, it would provide a field day for attorneys creating will contests among family members.

Opponents of the bill said the guardian should not notify only relatives known to him/her, that anyone doing the notification should comply with the requirements of the Probate Code.

There wasn't a vote to table the bill and mark it up for a vote. Sen. Ortiz y Pino said he was willing to sit down with two of the attorneys on the Senate Judiciary Committee and try to address the issues.

5:00pm PST …6:00pm MST …7:00pm CST8:00pm EST

LISTEN LIVE or listen to the archive later

Lawless America: Kathie Seidel and Greg Seidel

Lawless America: Kathie Seidel
Lawless America: Greg Seidel

Law enforcement, MT lawmakers to fight elder abuse

Global stranger scams prey on older, trusting generations, and with Montana's elderly population expected to double between now and 2030, seniors in the Treasure State are at high risk.

"We will rank fifth in the nation in the next few years as far as having the highest percentage of elderly people," explained Big Sky Senior Services Executive Director Denise Armstrong. "We are just ripe for the scam artists."

Financial exploitation isn't the only type of abuse. Thousands of elders in Montana also fall victim to physical, emotional and sexual abuse, along with various forms of neglect. "Statistically they say only one in five cases are reported," Armstrong said. That means between 2011 and 2012, instead of the reported 6,000 victims, an estimated 30,000 older Montanans were abused.

Despite those statistics, the amount of offenders prosecuted under the Montana Elder Abuse Prevention Act over the past two decades is minimal. "Since the act was passed in 1992, there's only been 65 convictions in the entire state since 1992. That tells us that the Act is being underutilized," said Twito. "That doesn't mean that there's not crimes against seniors, it just means prosecutors aren't using it."

Because of that, county attorneys statewide are pushing for Senate Bill 134 this legislative session. The bill revises portions of the existing Act, making it easier for prosecutors to use it in elder abuse cases. Senate Bill 134 would eliminate the need for prosecutors to prove the victim's capacity due to mental or physical impairment and clarifies that the definition of an older person is anyone over the age of 60.

Full Article & Source:
Law enforcement, MT lawmakers to fight elder abuse