Nephew Convicted of Stealing More Than $100,000 from Disabled Aunt
May 16, 2022
Brighton, CO — Today, 17th Judicial District Attorney Brian Mason is announcing the At-Risk Theft conviction of Hilario Morehouse, 42. An Adams County Jury found Morehouse guilty on Friday, May 13, 2022, after five days of trial.
In 2008, Hilario Morehouse became the legal guardian and power of attorney for his disabled aunt who was in a care facility due to multiple sclerosis, dementia, and other health issues. As a result of the guardianship, Morehouse was in control of his aunt's finances which included monies from a pension, a previous settlement, and funds owed to her minor daughter.
Between 2008 and 2019, Morehouse stole more than $100,000 from his disabled aunt who is non-verbal and is completely dependent on facility staff for all of her care. Morehouse claimed that his non-verbal aunt said he could use her $848 a month pension for himself. Morehouse also said that he spent some of the money on his minor cousin but was unable to provide any documentation or receipts to corroborate his claim. The defendant stole the majority of a $75,000 settlement which was intended to be used for the care of the at-risk victim's minor daughter.
On Friday, May 13, 2022, Morehouse was convicted of:
Theft--At Risk Victim (F3)
Morehouse will be sentenced on July 19, 2022, at 8:30am in Division M.
"The actions of this defendant are truly abhorrent. Mr. Morehouse preyed on a vulnerable, at-risk adult – his own aunt – and stole over $100,000 of her money, undoubtedly believing he would never be caught. We will not tolerate this criminal behavior. Individuals, like Mr. Morehouse, who prey on the vulnerabilities of our elderly and at-riskwill be prosecuted and held accountable," said District Attorney Brian Mason."
The prosecution of this case was led by Chief Deputy District Attorney Alex Baker and Deputy District Attorney Danny Paulson of the Financial Crimes Unit in the 17th Judicial District Attorney's Office.
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District Attorney Mason assumed the oath of office on January 12, 2021. The 17th Judicial District Attorney’s Office endeavors to seek justice on behalf of the citizens of Adams and Broomfield counties in felony and misdemeanor cases. DA Mason and his staff are dedicated to transforming the criminal justice system to better serve the citizens of the 17th Judicial District.
Ms. Gazelka is a forensic therapist and clinician in Denver, Colorado. She is currently focused on providing therapy and assessment services to adult offenders in the community corrections and parole systems as a supervisor at Correctional Psychology Associates (CPA). Her education and career have been devoted to the intersection of psychology and law since 2000. Ms. Gazelka has been working within the field of forensic and correctional psychology since 2006, providing therapy in the community and acute mental health care and risk assessments in county jails. She has practiced as a Licensed Professional Counselor since June 2012. She also became a Licensed Addiction Counselor in March 2014. She was listed as a full operating level DVOMB Approved Provider in June 2019 and started a fledgling DV program oriented to Colorado’s Department of Corrections at CPA in September 2019. Ms. Gazelka was appointed to the Domestic Violence Offender Management Board (DVOMB) in March 2019 and has started her second term with the board. Ms. Gazelka has been recognized for her work as Contributor of the Year at CPA in 2010 and 2012, as well as having been awarded an Alumni Impact Award for her forensic work in the community by University of Denver’s GSPP in 2019. Ms. Gazelka received her Master of Arts degree in Forensic Clinical Psychology from University of Denver's Graduate School of Professional Psychology in 2009. Ms. Gazelka also received her Juris Doctorate from William Mitchell College of Law in 2007, obtaining attorney’s licenses in both Minnesota and Colorado (currently inactive).
Alex Castro Croy
Alex Castro Croy is a bilingual, bicultural, Trauma and Addiction Counselor and owner/Lead Clinician of Life Recovery Centers in Denver and Northglenn Colorado.
A first-generation immigrant from Mexico who accomplished his dream in higher education receiving an AA in Pastoral Ministry (Dallas, Texas), Bachelor of Science in Human Services (MSU in Denver, Colorado) and MA in Community Counseling from Regis University (Denver, Co). He is continuing to pursue his MA/Ph.D. from Pacifica Graduate Institute in Jungian and Archetypal Studies.
Alex’s passion includes training, teaching, counseling, and consulting. He has been an Adjunct Professor for the Human Services Department at MSU-Denver for 9 years. He has served as an Interventionist for the Latino GLBTQ community, Drug Court Probation Officer at Denver Juvenile Court Probation (8 years), Bilingual Diversion Officer for Denver DA office (5 years), and currently owner and director of Life Recovery Centers (7 years). He has worked with a variety of clients from all walks of life and his eclectic therapeutic interventions have proven to be effective in treating trauma and addiction.
Thea Wessel is an addictions counselor with a private practice in Colorado. She has been working in the criminal and addiction fields for thirteen years. Ms. Wessel earned her Masters in forensic psychology from the University of Denver and has her LPC, LAC, MAC, NCAAC, and ADS. She is working towards her Ph.D. in Transpersonal Psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies. Ms. Wessel continually challenges herself and others to provide quality addiction treatment and ways to continue to educate the community about addiction issues.