Homeless Endangered Across America

 Homeless shelter chief accused of dodging taxes on $2 million

Detroit (AP) – The head of a homeless shelter has been indicted on accusations of diverting money from his agency to make $760,000 in illegal campaign contributions and dodging taxes on $2 million in income.

Homeless man return wallet containing $900 cash

SANTA ANA, Calif. – A homeless man searching through garbage bins for recyclable cans found a missing wallet and had it returned to its owner.

Kim Bogue, who works as a janitor in the city’s government buildings, realized that her wallet was missing last week and doubted she’s ever get back the $900 and credit cards inside.

According to the article, Bogue was saving for a trip to Thailand.  Days later, a homeless man found the wallet wrapped in a plastic bag in a trash bin, when Bogue had accidentally thrown it away with her lunch. 

He gave it to Sherry Wesley, who works in a nearby building.

Bogue reportedly gave the man a 4100 reward and expressed the opinion that if anyone else had found the wallet she would have never seen it again.

Homeless man beaten with bottle

An article in Myrtle Beach’s Sun News reported that a homeless man was seriously injured after being beaten with an empty vodka bottle in Chapin Park.

Edward Grimmage was taken to Grand Strand Regional Medical Center after he received deep cuts to his head from the attack with the broken liquor bottle, according to Myrtle Beach police.

James Shaw of Conway was charged with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, and resisting arrest, police said.

Shaw remained in J. Reuben Long Detention Center in lieu of $5,000 bail.

Grimmage, whose condition was unknown, was the second homeless man in the past several weeks to fall victim to an attack.

Steven Walsh, a homeless man who was believed to be in his early 50s, was assaulted March 23 and died several dies later from his injuries.

The incident involving Grimmage and Shaw happened in Chapin Park, 1400 N. Kings Highway in Myrtle Beach.

Grimmage reportedly told police that Shaw shouted obscenities at him so he walked away.  Shaw followed him and punched him in the head, causing him to fall down.  Shaw then struck him with the empty bottle.

Shaw kicked and screamed at officers who arrested him, according to an incident report cited in the article.  Two police officers subdued Shaw, who was then taken to J. Reuben Long Detention Center.

Man stabbed to death in homeless shelter

ROCHESTER, N.Y.  A 43-year-old man was stabbed to death inside a city homeless shelter Tuesday.

Anthony Williams had apparently been involved in an argument with another person prior to the stabbing, said police Lt. Tim List in the article.  Police were reportedly not sure if the other person was a man or a woman.  Officers also did not know what the altercation was about.

Williams’ sister, Loretta Kidd, said Williams was born in Florida and had lived in Rochester for about 20 years.

Two Men Charged in Death of Homeless Man

Cumberland County detectives filed arrest warrants for two people suspected in the death of a homeless man.  Detectives charged Bakhiyia Douglas and Hope Mills with second-degree murder in the death of Curtis Green.

Green’s body was found on a rural road in Cumberland County in April.  An autopsy shows the cause of death was blunt force trauma to the upper body.  They also charged Nathaniel Solomon with accessory after the fact in the death.  Investigators say there was an ongoing dispute between the men.

Good Samaritan Program Plans to Expand

The only homeless shelter in Santa Barbara County got the funding it need to expand Construction of the expansion has begun and when finished, the $2million project will help more than just the homeless population.  It will have the full service commercial kitchen.  The kitchen and dining hall will serve about 150 people three square meals a day, but volunteers have a bigger plan for the facility.  Good Samaritan and Community Action Commission will partner together and will provide 3,000 meals for all of their North County Head Start programs, their senior program and also provide meals to Juvenile Hall.  At night the dining hall will turn into a shelter for the homeless.

Elderly women tied to homeless insurance scam

LOS ANGELES – Two elderly women were charged with mail fraud after collecting $2.2 million from insurance policies they took out on a pair of homeless men who died in mysterious hit-and-run accidents. They were arrested because police feared they were targeting more transients.

The police are investigating whether the women were directly involved in the men’s deaths.  Helen Golay, 75, and Olga Rutterschmidt, 72, alternately claimed to be a fiancées’, close relative or business partner of the men to get insurance policies worth more than $4 million.

According to the article, authorities aren’t sure who was behind the wheel when the men were killed and have not ruled out the women.

Each of the women, neither of whom had a criminal record, have been charged with eights counts of federal mail fraud for collecting money from policies they held on Kenneth McDavid, 50, and Paul Vados, 73.  McDavid was run down in June and Vados was struck and killed in 1999 – both in alleys apparently without eyewitnesses.  Each death occurred shortly after the two-year wait that made the women eligible to collect on their policies.

The women reportedly befriended McDavid and Vados and provided them apartments in exchange for their signing individual life insurance policies.  The women then duplicated Vados’ and McDavid’s  signatures on rubber stamps and used them to secure more than a dozen other policies.  The women ended up collecting $2.2 million and wanted more, filing lawsuits when some companies didn’t pay.

McDavid’s body was found in a alley last June.  He appeared to have been run over.  Vados was found dead in an alley in 1999 and also appeared to have been run over.  Golay and Rutterschmidt claimed his body.  They had told one insurance company that he had no relatives when he actually had three, according to the affidavit.

Police learned of the women’s connection to the men serendipitously – one detective investigating one of the deaths overhead another talking about his investigation of the other.

Homeless Soldier Ambushed

A former U.S. soldier living in some woods in DeLand, Fla., was ambushed by four teens in the city’s third attack on a homeless man, according to Local 6 news.

According to the article, Bill Railsback, 51, was drinking beer at a homeless camp when the teens jumped and began to beat him.  Railsback fought back and injured at least one of the attackers.

Rainsback said he believes he broke one of his attacker’s arms during the scuffle.  He said his attackers were between the ages of 16 to 20.

The attacks are happening in remote locations in woods.  According to the article, this is the third assault on a homeless man in DeLand since March.

In April, four Holly Hill teens received 22 to 35 years in prison for beating a homeless man to death.

The First United Methodist Church in DeLand is offering a $1,000 reward for information concerning the attack or the identity of the attackers.

Copyright: NEOCH Homeless Grapevine Cleveland, Ohio; Issue 76