Lake County, California, is said to be known for a few things besides having the state’s largest freshwater contained lake—pear production, bird watching, wineries, recent meth lab busts and Glenn Neasham, the convicted insurance agent who thought, he claims, he was selling a good product to a competent senior.
In the wake of Neasham’s felony conviction for theft, a jail sentence to go along with it, and his ongoing legal battle to get that conviction overturned, financial advisors and insurance agents are wondering if they might also fall into the same legal hole that Neasham cannot seem to escape. While the chances are slim for a replication of all of the factors and personalities in Neasham’s case to reassemble themselves elsewhere, there is no safe harbor in current law to prevent a jail sentence for an agent who sells an annuity to a customer who may turn out to have dementia or Alzheimer’s at the time of the sale.
As most readers who have followed the case know, a 12-person jury found former insurance agent Neasham, now 52, guilty of felony theft on Oct. 23, 2011 for selling an annuity to a then-83 year-old woman named Fran Schuber.
As ProducersWEB writes, Judge Richard Martin denied the motion for a new trial in February, refused to drop the felony charge to a misdemeanor and sentenced Neasham to probation and 300 days in jail. Martin stayed all but 90 days of the sentence. Neasham, out on bail, plans to appeal.
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Who Will Be the Next Glenn Neasham?