A man is facing multiple charges after police say he took more than $30,000 from his mother’s bank accounts while she was living in an assisted living center because of her dementia.
Tyler Rice, 29, has been charged with theft, exploitation of an older or vulnerable person and use of a credit/debit card without contest.
According to an arrest warrant, the center asked the victim for her rent payment in May 2018, and she said she had lost her debit card and asked Wells Fargo to cancel it. Two days later, Rice appeared at the center to give his mother the canceled card because it was no longer working, advised her there was no money left in the account and suggested that she should sell her home.
After that encounter, the victim went to her bank and requested her statements for the past three months and realized that her son had done multiple transactions without her authorization.
In October, Wells Fargo notified Las Vegas police about its investigation regarding suspected elder financial exploitation, citing 441 unauthorized uses of the debit card for purchases of fast food or food-related purchases, various online games and ride-sharing. There were also transfers to a credited Wells Fargo account owned by Tyler Rice.
The bank investigator interviewed Rice, who said that he did have permission to use the card and transfer funds and denied any wrongdoing. When the investigator told Rice that this could be filed with law enforcement, he indicated he was a bit frightened as he had not done anything wrong, according to the warrant.
Police asked Rice to come in for an interview in November about the money transfers from his mother’s accounts. He said that the bank fraud investigator told him that the case was closed and they would not be pursuing charges. The police detective told Rice that this was not the case since he had just talked with the same investigator, according to the warrant.
Rice then said someone had taken over his accounts and made those purchases. When asked if he filed a police report, Rice replied, “No.”
Rice was released on his own recognizance and ordered to stay away from his mother. He is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on Oct. 1 in Las Vegas Justice Court.