Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Peter David Nitschke, a HOA Attorney, Charged with Embezzlement of $720K from trust belonging to Elderly Sisters

Posted By CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita - Peter David Nitschke, an Attorney who previously represented HOA Hero Michael Curtis and HOA activist Katie MacDaniel  has been charged with embezzling over $720,000 from his client trust account from two elderly sisters after offering to assist them with their finances following the death of their mother.

According to the Orange County District Attorney’s  (OCDA) office, Nitschke, 45, Newport Beach, is charged with two felony counts of theft from an elder with sentencing enhancements and allegations for over $100,000 loss, aggravated white collar crime over $500,000, and property loss over $200,000.

Detectives from the Irvine Police Department (IPD) arrested the defendant this morning. Nitschke is being held on $725,000 bail and is expected to be arraigned tomorrow, Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2012.

In March 2010, the 95-year-old mother of 65-year-old Diane C. and 69-year-old Virginia C. died, leaving her daughters a home in Northern California and over $675,000 in bank accounts.

Nitschke, a then-Irvine-based attorney, is accused of being friends with the victim's family and was president of their church congregation, the Lutheran Church of the Cross in Laguna Woods. Nitschke is accused of offering to help Diane and Virginia C. settle the financial accounts and directed them to give him cashier's checks in the amount of all the funds left to them in the bank accounts by their mother. He is accused of stealing over $675,000 from the victims by depositing the money into his personal bank accounts instead of placing it in his client trust account as required by the California State Bar.  The defendant is also accused of stealing an additional $46,000 from the victim by failing to return the funds to them from a real estate transaction. Nitschke is accused of then spending the money or hiding it by moving it into other accounts. 

In early 2012, the victims' family inquired with the defendant about the money to assist Diane and Virginia C. with medical and nursing home expenses. Despite the account having been closed with a zero balance, Nitschke is accused of creating a fraudulent bank statement dated that month to falsely show that the funds were in his client trust account. 

After becoming suspicious of the defendant's handling of the accounts, the victim's called IPD in May 2012.  


State Sponsored Elder Abuse 

Posted By CotoBlogzz June 26, 2011

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA – If you want to get back at your elder parents for your own shortcoming, this is your day.  According to  Kathleen Wilber,  USC's. Mary Pickford Professor of Gerontology,  recent studies suggest that more than one in seven older adults is victimized each year. Unfortunately, such studies rarely take into account what we refer to as the parasitic bureaucracy effect – this is where a bureaucracy either to cover up its own incompetence and or to increase its sphere of influence, delays, denies and ore ignores reporters requests for transparency, as described in some of the pieces summarized below.

This parasitic effect is the main reason why we are encouraging Orange County Supervisor Candidates Chuck DeVore and Todd Spitzer to agree to request the state to conduct an independent audit on the county in general and the Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) specifically.  Take for instance, after our Public Records Act (PRA) filed with Darlene Bloom regarding clarification on the recent OCSD audit was ignored, we pressed and finally got a disingenuous response from Howard Sutter, Orange County, CEO Community/Media Relations, to which we said:

“While the argument that the new OSCD leadership has changed the dynamics and the newly instituted processed have a positive impact is compelling, it fails to recognize that the major component in culture change in the department is the union's  leadership. That is, we posit the culture will not change unless the union agrees to change.  The auditor's conclusion can be misleading:  "we changed management, therefore the culture has now changed" is disingenuous.

As you know, SOX legislation was passed in an attempt to prevent Enron-like debacles.  The concept has three tenets:  1)  Have management sign financial reports to certify reports are accurate.  2)  Certify the report are accurate and a process is in place to make sure they are.  We advocate something similar for OCSD management for any use of resources.”

Our response to Mr. Howar Sutter's disinigenous response

The point is that elder abuse viewed from the researchers’ lens such as Professor
Mary Pickford’s is of concern.  The reality is that it is a literal Death Trap.

Documented Elder Abuse, including examples of the parasitic effect.

“Elderly Abuse:  Parolees discovered living in nursing homes, residents not told of sex offenders, ex-cons”  Chris Fuscon and Lori Rackl describe how they investigated the high numbers of sex offenders and parolees living in Illinois’ nursing homes – Investigative Reporters and and Editors (IRE) September/October 2005

“Poor Regulation,” The Oregonian.  Brent Walth writes about and investigation that he and fellow reporter Erin Hoover Barnett did on the sudden collapse of the Oregon-based Assisted Living Concepts.  The company, which at some point acquired a new assisted-living center every week., “slashed budget, paid measly wages and hired inexperienced staff.”  The article points to some of the differences in regulations in assisted-living and nursing homes - – Investigative Reporters and and Editors (IRE) November/December  2002

“Agencies in New Mexico impeded fraud and elder care investigation,” The New Mexico Independent.  The series explored allegations that state agencies interfered with fraud and elder abuse investigations.  The Medical Fraud Division stated that the Human Services Department and the Health Department had withheld, filtered and sanitized information and documents requested by investigators – Government Health, February 23, 2011

“Edler Abuse investigations mishandled at state veteran homes.” The Dallas Morning News, James Drew of the Dallas Morning News found that a criminal investigation into alleged abuse by two workers at a state veteran’s home in West Texas languished for more than two years because of confusion who should investigate and conflicts among police, state officials and veteran’s home investigators – Justice, April 7, 2011

Elder abuse is a devastating but often overlooked problem that can cause emotional as well as physical pain and suffering, shattered trust, financial ruin and even an increased risk of dying. The tragedy of elder abuse was recently brought home by 90-year-old screen legend Mickey Rooney in his dramatic Congressional testimony describing his own experiences.
“Recent studies suggest that more than one in seven older adults is victimized each year,” said the USC Davis School of Gerontology’s Kathleen Wilber, who is the Mary Pickford Professor of Gerontology. “Sadly, a recent summary of elder abuse interventions found that there is little evidence that efforts to prevent or address abuse work.” – June 2011

“The Price of Living” series, The Post Courier, Chareslton, S.C.  The newspaper spent months going through individual case files at the Charleston County Probate Court to learn what was happening to the savings of the elderly incapacitated persons.  Reporter Doug Pardue discovered a court that was set up to protect vulnerable elderly persons but often helped drain their estates though court-approved fees to lawyers, guardians and conservators.  Health, Justice, Dec. 2010

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA – so what  do these people have in common? 

See if you can match the face to the crime:

According to the Orange County District Attorney’s (OCDA) office, your mother’s  care-giver, relative, best friend, attorney, doctors, fill in the blank,  announced the arrest of Joe Doe/Jane Doe. Your mother with Alzheimer’s disease entered a nursing home some eight months ago.  Somehow, Joe Doe/Jane Doe  acquired your mother’s power of attorney.

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