Sentinel-Echo.com

December 19, 2012

Couple arrested for exploiting elderly person

By Nita Johnson
Staff Writer

LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — A Laurel couple will face a preliminary hearing in Laurel District Court on Tuesday on claims they used intimidation against an elderly person.

Robert J. Walker, 32, and 44-year-old Melissa Walker, both of 220 Ky. 1228 in East Bernstadt, are charged with knowingly exploiting an adult of more than $300. The Walkers, who represented themselves as owners/operators of B&M Lawn Care, allegedly forced an elderly person to pay them more than $10,000 between May and November of this year for lawn services they provided.

The Walkers reportedly used mowing contracts and threats to convince the victim to make payments for mowing the yard. The checks written to the Walkers by the victim ranged from $60 to $840 as well as two cash payments of $240 and $100. The total amount paid to the Walkers was $10,115 over a six-month period.

The investigating officer, Sgt. Joe Smith with the London Police Department, wrote on the arrest warrant that he had spoken with another lawn service who estimated the cost of mowing the victim’s yard at $35, a job that could be completed in 30 to 40 minutes.

Instead, the Walkers charged the victim numerous times at rates of $240, $285, $610, $950, $130, $1,400, $600, according to checks written by the victim, who is more than 80 years old.

The arrest warrant states that most of the money was taken between September and November, and had been done by the Walkers threatening to have the elderly person put in jail if the Walkers did not receive the money they demanded.



njohnson@sentinel-echo.com