Litchfield woman charged with draining mother’s bank account
LITCHFIELD -- A Litchfield woman is charged with draining her mother's bank accounts in order to prop up a failing bar and restaurant, which resulted in the elderly woman being evicted from her care facility.
LITCHFIELD - A Litchfield woman is charged with draining her mother’s bank accounts in order to prop up a failing bar and restaurant, which resulted in the elderly woman being evicted from her care facility.
Ann Marie Zillmer, 55, is charged with six felony counts of financial exploitation of a vulnerable adult.
Zillmer made her initial court appearance Tuesday in Meeker County District Court, where bail was set at $50,000.
The investigation was initiated Feb. 27 when law enforcement and Meeker County Social Services was notified that a vulnerable adult had been evicted from an adult care facility in Winsted for non-payment of rent and services.
According to court documents, Zillmer had the power of attorney for her mother, who is described as unable to provide adequately for her own care.
Zillmer allegedly told investigators in a phone interview that her mother’s bank accounts had been depleted and that “most” of the money had been used for her mother’s care, including payments to the care facility.
Zillmer allegedly told the officer that she had received legal advice to use funds from her mother’s account to compensate for time when her mother lived with her.
The complaint, however, states that the power of attorney provision between Zillmer and her mother explicitly prohibited transfer of the mother’s property to Zillmer.
After subpoenaing bank records, investigators discovered “large numbers of recurring transfers” from the mother’s bank account to an account with a four-letter acronym that represented the name of Zillmer’s bar/restaurant in Darwin.
According to the complaint, Zillmer is alleged to have transferred a total of $219,786 from her mother’s bank accounts for her own use over a period of 3½ years, starting in January of 2012 and ending in February of 2015.
Zillmer allegedly used $185,603 to fund an unnamed bar/restaurant in Darwin that she owned and operated.
Another $34,183 was allegedly used to make loan payments to a bank in Illinois.
In an interview with law enforcement in March at her bar/restaurant, Zillmer allegedly acknowledged that her business was not doing well and had money to stay in operation for about six months.
She allegedly told law enforcement that she had transferred money from her mother’s account to that of her bar/restaurant.
Zillmer’s request for a public defender was denied by Judge Stephanie Beckman.
Zillmer’s next court appearance is set for Dec. 17.