A Sandy man accused of exploiting an elderly woman for $182,000 in 2011 under the pretense of home repairs was sentenced Monday to repay the amount in full and spend four years on probation.
Richard Clyse, 47, pleaded guilty Monday in 3rd District Court to a misdemeanor charge of reckless abuse or neglect of a vulnerable adult. The maximum penalty was one year in jail.
But Judge Ann Boyden sentenced Clyse to repay the $182,000 he allegedly stole from the victim, who is older than 65, at a rate of $500 per month. She also ordered Clyse to serve four years on probation, during which time he may not have access to elderly folks' money.
According to police, Clyse rented a house from the woman between October 2010 and July 2011. In that time, Clyse asked the woman to cut him a $14,560 check for pipe repairs and a $19,850 check for sun room repairs that Clyse said had been dictated by a Sandy city inspector, according to court documents.
Police later found the pipes were not in need of repair and no inspector had ever visited the home. Police said they had reason to believe Clyse scammed another $147,590 from his landlord, though they did not specify what the money had been used for at the time of Clyse's arrest.
Clyse was originally charged with exploitation of a vulnerable adult, a second-degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in Utah state prison. His guilty plea was part of an agreement with prosecutors that reduced the severity of charges.