FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 11, 2019
Brooklyn Man Sentenced for Stealing Neighbor’s East New York Home;
Transferred Deed to Himself After Forging Notary’s Signature
Defendant Befriended Elderly Victim for Whom He Worked as Part-Time Caretaker
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that an East New York man has been sentenced to five months in jail and five years’ probation for stealing and attempting to sell the home of his 85-year-old neighbor, a diabetic man for whom the defendant was a part-time caretaker.
District Attorney Gonzalez said, “With today’s sentencing this defendant is being held accountable for preying on his elderly neighbor and abusing his trust. I urge seniors and their family members to protect their homes, especially as property values continue to rise in Brooklyn, by taking care not to sign any documents pertaining to their properties without the advice of a reputable attorney. I remain committed to prosecuting deed thefts like this and assisting all homeowners whenever possible.”
The District Attorney identified the defendant as Jordan Horsford, 29, of East New York, Brooklyn. He was sentenced today by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun to five months in jail and five years’ probation. The defendant pleaded guilty to third-degree grand larceny in June and consented to an order nullifying the fraudulent recorded deed.
The District Attorney said that, according to the investigation, in August 2016 the defendant, who was known to do odd jobs in the neighborhood, began helping the victim as needed, including carrying his wheelchair up steps and helping him get in and out of vehicles; he was paid for each task by the victim’s family.
In April 2017, the victim’s family began paying the defendant $400 a week to accept Meals on Wheels deliveries and set them out for the victim, to make sure he took his medicine and to check in on him at night.
Between June 19, 2017 and November 1, 2017, the defendant convinced the victim to sign away the deed to his home on Barbey Street in East New York, Brooklyn. The defendant told the victim he risked losing his home if he did not sign a document, and had the document notarized by a notary. The defendant then realized he needed another document notarized, but the notary refused so the defendant cut and pasted her original signature. He then recorded the deed, which had been signed over to him.
Finally, the defendant attempted to sell the house almost immediately after securing the deed, but a title company suspected foul play and refused to insure the home. The would-be purchaser then reached out to the 85-year-old victim’s family. At around the same time, the victim’s daughter, while going through her father’s mail, found a letter from the Department of Finance notifying them about documents filed relating to the property. The daughter pursued the matter with the DOF and the case was ultimately referred to the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office for further investigation and prosecution.
The case was prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Karen Turner of the District Attorney’s Frauds Bureau, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Gavin Miles, Counsel to the Frauds Bureau, and the overall supervision of Assistant District Attorney Patricia McNeill, Deputy Chief of the District Attorney’s Investigations Division.