Thomas Yendes, son of elder abuse victim, on California Judge R. Gary Klausner failing to protect abused seniors
My brother, sister, and I were introduced to Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge R. Gary Klausner in a very unfortunate way. My mother, June Y. Brown, who was in her late 70s, was the victim of elder abuse by John Chalpoutis. John posed as a so-called friend and was known as her “grandson” in the banks that she visited. When we discovered what was going on, my brother, sister, and I took immediate action. We contacted the elder abuse section of the Los Angeles Police Department, and they attempted to prosecute John Chalpoutis for elder abuse. They also told us that we needed to contact Marc Hankin, an attorney who was an expert on elder abuse.
Through Marc Hankin, we started a conservatorship for my mother, and action against John Chalpoutis in court.
It was in court under Judge Klausner that we were shocked by the delays and postponements that the judge continued to order. This was not only disappointing for my brother, sister, and me, but also costly. They had to travel from Northern California and Texas to be at these wasted proceedings.
We sat through other cases in which Judge Klausner took no action and clients got no restitution. When it was our turn, we got more of the same. We got delays. The judge would essentially say, “We’ll take that up next time,” and then he would give the defendant more time to get his papers in order. We began to feel the court was protecting Mr. Chalpoutis and not my mother. This was especially true when viewing decisions in other cases by Judge Klausner.
In the end, John Chalpoutis was never held to account for the money taken (about $200,000) or the property (furniture, coins, dolls, and antiques) that he removed from my mother’s apartment. Nor did he receive any punishment for his contempt where he refused to provide records or answer questions at a deposition.
My brother, sister, and I felt that we were victims too because we received no justice in the courts. We also felt that my mother was a victim twice, once by John Chalpoutis for elder abuse and again at the hands of Judge Klausner. Please investigate this breach of justice.
[Written by Thomas Yendes]