Georgia Man Pleads Guilty to Elder Exploitation

In Hart County, Georgia, Lawrence Montgomery, Jr. has pleaded guilty to one felony count of Exploitation of an Elder Person, as announced by Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr. The plea was accepted by Superior Court Judge Jeffery Malcom on April 2, 2024. Montgomery has been sentenced to 10 years of probation. Additionally, the court has ordered him to pay restitution to the victim. Moreover, Montgomery is prohibited from serving as a guardian or power of attorney for another person for the duration of his sentence.

“Far too often, a family member takes advantage of a vulnerable older adult – one who is unlikely to protect themselves or their finances,” said Carr. “Ensuring the safety of Georgia’s seniors remains a top priority, and we will continue fighting to combat elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation of any kind.”

Case Summary

Lawrence Montgomery, Jr. placed his mother, Ruth Montgomery, under the care of Hartwell Health & Rehabilitation, becoming her personal representative, after she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2019. Mr. Montgomery was thus obligated to use his mother’s monthly social security checks to pay for her room and board at the facility. Instead, over the course of five months from October 2019 to February 2020, Mr. Montgomery gained sole access to her bank account and diverted his mother’s funds to himself, putting the 77-year-old woman at risk of being discharged from the facility. Hartwell Health & Rehabilitation reported his conduct to the Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH), and the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Division launched an investigation in 2020.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant Attorneys General Tarrea Williams and Kendra Mitchell of the Medicaid Fraud Division. Other members of the Medicaid Fraud Division who played important roles in the prosecution include Investigator Lee Thompson, Nurse Investigator Victoria Hall, Intelligence Analyst Vanda Russell, and Investigative Auditor Cecilia Isaac Vazquez.