By Yolo County District Attorney's Office
Yolo County District Attorney Jeff Reisig announced that on Friday, April 27, 2012, 32-year-old Dennis Martinez of Woodland pled to three felony charges for his theft from an 88 year old disabled woman.
The victim and her daughter had hired Martinez to do yard work over a three day period. On the third day, the elderly victim, who is legally blind, let Martinez in to use the restroom while her daughter was away. The victim later discovered that Martinez had stolen her late husband’s wallet and began using his credit cards at different locations. The Woodland Police Department investigated the case and recovered video of defendant and an accomplice using the credit card at multiple businesses.
Martinez pled no contest to First Degree Burglary with a special allegation that the home was occupied, a charge of Theft from an Elder and a Second Degree Burglary for entering one of the businesses to commit a theft. Martinez is expected to be sentenced on May 23, 2012 by the Honorable David Rosenberg.
“Seniors should be especially wary of thieves posing as handymen or yard workers,” commented Elder Abuse Prosecutor Ryan Couzens. “These opportunistic predators,” continued Couzens, “will often troll neighborhoods looking for seniors and other vulnerable people to isolate and exploit.” The District Attorney’s office recommends using reputable services for handymen or landscaping to help avoid being victimized. To verify that a contractor is currently licensed you can contact the Contractors State License Board at (800) 321-2752.