Virginia Couple Sentenced Three Months in Jail for Theft and Abuse of 84-Year-Old Woman

A couple accused of bilking a dying Virginia woman out of thousands of dollars pleaded guilty yesterday to single charges of grand larceny and misdemeanor abuse.  The pleas by Timothy Propst, 33, of Weyers Cave, and Gracia Jean Propst, 32, of Crimora, averted a bench trial in Augusta County Circuit Court.

The couple and the victim’s adopted son, 39-year-old Robert Mitchell, were nabbed by authorities last summer after allegations arose the three has abused and stole money from Mitchell’s 84-year-old mother, Irene Mitchell, who passed away last November.

According to the Augusta County Sheriff’s Office, Robert Mitchell moved into his mother’s Churchville home in April 2009. Within a week, the Propsts also moved in. Soon after, checks written by the elderly Mitchell were being cashed at a local bank.  The sheriff’s office alleged the three defendants threatened to burn down Mitchell’s home if she didn’t cooperate and write the checks.

In a plea deal with the Augusta County prosecutor’s office, the Propsts were sentenced to three months in jail.  Both also were placed on four years of supervised probation. All three defendants were ordered to pay $8,150 in restitution.  Robert Mitchell pleaded guilty in February to a single count of grand larceny, and agreed to testify against the Propsts. He received no jail time. For more, read the story.


Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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