Man who fleeced elderly clients pleads guilty

Man who fleeced elderly clients pleads guilty

He targeted the elderly and stole their life savings. After taking advantage of dozens of victims across two states, he faced a judge on Tuesday and got a chance to make it right.

Dennis Flood was an insurance agent. He lost his license so he couldn't earn money through sales commissions, but he kept selling things, like annuities, to elderly clients.

"Instead of earning a commission, he stole the elderly's money. Just that simple," assistant county prosecutor Paul Soucie explained.

Many of his victims were unaware that he was siphoning off their life savings until an investigation uncovered his scheme. It also uncovered the fact that the money is long gone.

Entering the courtroom, Flood said he had lots of regrets, but no further comment.

He came before Judge Hollie Gallagher facing charges for fleecing more than 40 elderly couples in 17 Ohio counties and three Pennsylvania counties. His total theft totaled more than $1 million.

With elderly theft growing, prosecutors were aided by a new "Elder Justice Initiative" in the Attorney General's Office. They tracked down victims or family members of victims, like Richard Marett.

"We welcomed him into our home with open arms every time he came," Marett told the judge. 

After his indictment, Flood attempted suicide, but failed.

Prosecutors believe Flood transferred some of the money to relatives, so they gave him an incentive to pay up.

"If this defendant is able to make restitution, the state will agree to reduce the eight years, to a time never less than five years," said Soucie.

Flood will be sentenced on Aug. 26.

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