Guelph man repeatedly charged woman with Alzheimer’s for roof repairs he never completed: OPP

File photo of a roof in Victoria, B.C.
File photo of a roof in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Megan Cole

Wellington County OPP have laid fraud charges in connection with a case in which an 80-year-old woman with Alzheimer’s  was allegedly defrauded of over $25,000 by a man who repeatedly charged her for roof repairs that he never completed.

“How the accused person can look themselves in the mirror after doing this to somebody else is pretty hard to understand,” Const. Joshua Cunningham said.

OPP say they were contacted on Oct. 7, 2019 after the people who were responsible for monitoring the woman’s finances discovered five cheques written to the suspect over the course of last summer.

READ MORE: Home repair scheme targeting seniors, say Toronto police

“Because our victim had different gaps in recall, we weren’t able to identify exactly how the suspect reached out or made contact with our victim,” said Cunningham.

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“The accused in this case wasn’t going to be cooperative with police in that they weren’t going to share with us how they located the victim and what their thoughts were on what the victim’s abilities were at the time.”

Cunningham said the suspect, a 25-year-old Guelph-Eramosa Township man, was charged with fraud over $5,000 on Monday after an extensive investigation. He is due in court in Guelph on March 20.

READ MORE: Norfolk senior defrauded of $200,000 in romance scam: OPP

As for compensation for the victim, Cunningham says it’s a long road.

“In one case the courts — which may take a bit of time before this gets to court — may award the victim some compensation. There’s also civil court that may take place,” he explained.

“But the real sad situation in this is we have a victim who may be in a worse state in the later months in the length of time it would take to see this get to court.”

Cunningham is reminding seniors especially to never let anyone in their home they don’t feel comfortable with and to never respond to unsolicited phone calls or emails soliciting for business or services like this. He also suggests people appoint a power of attorney as they get older.

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