A Chicago police officer stands accused Wednesday with stealing more than $50,000 from his ill, elderly father and proceeding, unsuccessfully, to impersonate him with the hopes of taking over over $100,000 in retirement savings.
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, Joseph Simpson, Jr., 37, turned himself in for the theft at the District 1 police station Wednesday morning. He reportedly used 15 of his father's checks to help pay off bills between January and October 2009 and, that same year, called JP Morgan Retirement Services, and impersonated his father in an effort to withdraw the $102,000 in his account.
The only reason the alleged scam didn't work is because Simpson made "frantic" follow-up calls after the money was mailed to his father's Kentucky address instead of his Chicago residence.
Simpson's father, then-69-year-old Joseph Simpson, Sr., died last November in a nursing home where he had been living in a "severely impaired" state due to dementia and Parkinson's disease.
The younger Simpson has now been charged with multiple counts of theft, fraud and financial exploitation of the elderly and was ordered held in lieu of a $40,000 bond. A police officer for over a decade, the South Loop resident has now been relieved of his police powers and reassigned to desk duty, the Chicago Tribune reported. He last worked in the 18th District.
The Tribune also reports that among the personal expenses Simpson paid with his father's checks were large gambling debts. Shortly before he was removed as his father's legal guardian, he had spent $13,000 at a Harrah's Casino.
Simpson's attorney, Daniel Herbert, reportedly denied the charges to Criminal Court Judge Laura Sullivan. Herbert added that his client simply "mismanaged" his father's finances and that "[t]here really is no victim here."