By Ehline Law Firm PC – I often discuss financial elder abuse. We have hear about attorneys taking advantage of people who are mentally ill. But this one takes the cake. Former police commander Matthew Messier was arrested by the Pleasanton police, after a four month investigation. Investigators allege Messier and his wife took control of an 82 year olds home, bank account, safety deposit box and cars, with assets amounting to approximately $750,000.
The Police Commander Gained the Trust of the Victims According to Sources
Messier, age 36 was a commander with the Pinole Police Department and investigators stated he used his position of authority in convincing a Pleasanton woman to sign over all her assets. Pleasanton Police Sgt. Kurt Schlehuber, who was one of the investigators said, the woman’s assets are estimated to be approximately $750,000. (Read More.)
What tipped them off? The investigation began, after a social worker in July found some problems with the woman’s assets, Sgt. Schlehuber said. He said that Messier’s wife identified as Elizabeth Regalado, age 30 was also involved. Sgt. Schlehuber said, the pair gained the trust of the victim’s estate and were named trustees. Messier has been charged by the Alameda County district attorney’s office with 14 counts of financial elder abuse (Defined Here.). The charges range from grand theft, to practicing law without a license.
Elizabeth Regalado is being charged with conspiracy and was supposed to turn herself in on Friday, Sgt. Schleuber said. He said she is aware that she is wanted and was supposed to turn herself in Friday night, and has not done so.
Director of the county adult protection division, Lisa Lahowe said, the elderly woman’s identity has not been released and is under the protection of the county’s public guardian.
Lahowe said in this case we have temporary conservatorship of the individual, in order to protect her assets and ensure there is no further abuse. Messier had resigned from the police department, during the investigation and was arraigned Friday, but did not enter a plea. His bail has been set at $322,000 and he remains in the county jail. A warrant has been issued for his wife, Elizabeth Regalado’s arrest.