OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – An 81-year-old metro woman is still trying to financially recover months after her handyman and caretaker allegedly withdrew thousands of dollars from her bank account over the course of three months.
Alice Dragoo told KFOR two of her close friends introduced her to Joseph Wisner late last year.
“A really super nice young man that I thought was honest and straightforward. I hired him to take care of me when I had shoulder surgery because I didn’t want strangers in the house. [When] I had met him, he was going through a hard time, so I thought I’d give him a helping hand,” said Dragoo.
Wisner was also hired to help out around the house and do minor repairs.
Dragoo and Wisner became good friends and often went out together, according to Dragoo.
Dragoo said while they were out and about one day, she gave Wisner her debit card to make a one-time withdraw from her International Bank of Commerce (IBC) account.
Dragoo also gave Wisner her pin number, he withdrew money and then they went on about their day.
“But then I got a bank statement and he had been taking my bank card and drawing up to 3 to $500 a night out of my checking account, my savings, the only thing I had left pushing for this all these last few years,” explained Dragoo.
Dragoo said she hardly ever checks her bank statement, “but that’s the way it was. I didn’t catch in time. My error.”
During some of those withdraws, Dragoo claimed to have been in Colorado visiting family, so she knew something wasn’t right.
Dragoo confronted Winser, but she said he never admitted to taking her money.
Dragoo said the IBC had video footage of Wisner withdrawing from her account at an ATM on N. Portland.
Dragoo and her family were able to produce the video and handed it over to Oklahoma City Police, according to officials.
Wisner was eventually kicked out of her home shortly after finding out.
“It appears that he had been stealing her ATM card, going out using it and coming back and replacing it without her having knowledge of it,” said Msgt. Gary Knight with OKCPD.
Dragoo said she is a heavy sleeper, and so while she was asleep, Wisner would take her card and use it during the nighttime.
Although Wisner never admitted to the crime in person, he texted Dragoo saying, “I’m sorry I let you down. I let a woman get the best of me and was trying to woo her is the stupid truth but I have always intended on returning what I borrowed. I’m sorry for the pain I’ve caused you. I never wanted to hurt you. Thank you for helping me. I love you…”
Dragoo has yet to receive that money back though.
On top of the $11,000 in cash that was allegedly stolen, Dragoo said she lost about $12,000 in family memories and tools.
“For the first time in my life, I had to ask for help for medication that my heart doctor says I have to have. I couldn’t afford it. I should have been able to afford my medicine even with my insurance paying the majority of it. I couldn’t afford the $300. That’s what it came down to. $300. I didn’t have it,” stated Dragoo.
Dragoo has tried contacting the IBC to get her money back, but she said talking with her bank has been a dead end.
“The bank said because I was with him one time and giving the numbers to my card to withdraw money from ATM that I gave him permission. They will not honor all the times he used it without me with it,” explained Dragoo.
She said she understands her specific branch may have to go through corporate to get the money back, but she doesn’t understand why they haven’t been able to do so thus far.
News 4 reached out to Dragoo’s specific IBC branch, but the representative said she had never heard about the situation and took our information down to pass it along to someone else.
We have not received a call back.
An arrest warrant was issued July 27 for Wisner.
He was arrested Monday and now faces charges for second degree burglary, elderly exploitation, and possession of a firearm by an adjudicated delinquent.
“I feel better that he’s going to have to pay. I mean, he’s got to grow up and face what he’s done is wrong and straighten his life up. He’s got a choice,” said Dragoo.
Dragoo wants her situation to be a lesson to others to do background research on who they’re letting into their home.
She said she feels like she can’t trust other people now, which is what she never wanted.