Kathryn (Katie) Davis, 54, of Oakhurst, was arrested yesterday for allegedly stealing tens-of-thousands of dollars from 90-year-old Bill Youngs, someone she apparently knew from her work at the Senior Center.
She was being held on a $50,000 bond, and will be arraigned in Madera Superior Court some time in the next 30 days.
Davis was taken into custody during a bingo game at the Senior Center at about 1 p.m. on Thursday, says Madera County District Attorney David Linn. The arrest follows a month-long investigation by D.A. and Sheriff’s investigators.
Linn says that in order to gather enough information for an arrest, investigators set up “pretext call” — a call between the victim and the alleged perpetrator, where the call is recorded and investigators are with the victim as the call is made.
Davis has been charged with one count of financial elder abuse, and has been extensively interviewed by the Sheriff’s Office, says Linn. Though the charges indicate that about $20,000 was taken, Linn thinks the total may approach $50,000, but that some of that may have been a “gift.”
In a search warrant uncovered by ABC30 Action News, they describe a $50,000 transfer from the 90-year-old’s bank account to one belonging to Katie Davis. They also report that Mr. Youngs said he would never just give away that much money. Youngs’s son-in-law, Chuck Nugent of Bass Lake’s Good Ol’ Daze antique store, told ABC30 that the elderly man was suffering from signs of dementia.
Investigators say they will continue to look for other crimes related to this case, and more potential victims.
“If we find more, we will charge those also,” he says. “This type of crime is an ever-increasing problem in Madera County, especially in Eastern Madera County, as the population is older and more susceptible.
“We will aggressively prosecute any elder abuse that occurs within Madera County, whether by residents or those outside the county — anyone who is attempting to take advantage of our seniors.”
According to the Sheriff’s Office, detectives are unsure at this point if there are additional victims, but anyone with any information is encouraged to call the Madera County Sheriff’s Office at 559-675-7770.
To watch ABC30’s Corin Hoggard’s interview with the family, click here.