Blind World Magazine

Health care worker gets 7 years for stealing from elderly blind man.




TCPalm.com, Florida.
Tuesday, August 15, 2006.




STUART - A health care worker who pleaded guilty to stealing almost $30,000 from a 94-year-old blind man in his care was sentenced Tuesday morning to seven years in prison - and a scolding for driving to court in his ill-gotten gains.


Stephan Victor, of the 700 block of Southeast Airoso Boulevard in Port St. Lucie, was charged with stealing $29,336 from Sandhill Cove resident John Danisch by using the older man's checkbook to write seven checks to himself for increasing amounts of money.


And driving to court in the Ford Expedition he bought with Danisch's money didn't help his case.


"Please sir, seven years?" Victor said after hearing the sentence.


"You should have been thinking of that as you were bleeding this man financially and buying toys," Circuit Court Judge Larry Schack said. "And the fact that you drove the car here that you stole from him makes it all the worse."


Victor, 23, apologized repeatedly Tuesday for using his position as a Lifecare Home Health Service worker to take advantage of Danisch, 95, who was in his care from January to June 2005. Danisch's son noticed the irregularities in his father's bank account after some checks bounced.


At one point during his statement, Victor broke down sobbing when describing his relationship with the man who once shared old war stories and war movies with him.


"I'm deeply sorry, really sorry, about this situation ... I wish Mr. Danisch was here, so I could say I'm sorry for this," he said.


When prompted by Assistant State Attorney Erin Kirkwood, who recommended a five-year sentence, Victor said he spent the money he took from Danisch to pay off school debts, take family and friends out to dinner and buy clothes and the sport utility vehicle.


He submitted a letter to Schack prior to the sentencing, but it was not read aloud.


"I read your letter," Schack said. "You quoted the Bible many times. What did Exodus say about justice?"


"That justice should be served and God wants justice to be served and what-not," Victor said.


"I was thinking more of 'An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth,' " Schack said before adding that he had wanted to give Victor 15 years, but had to reduce the sentence because he'd pleaded guilty.



http://www.tcpalm.com/tcp/local_news/article/0,2545,TCP_16736_4918538,00.html




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