MERCED, Calif. (CBS13) — A man has been arrested on a number of charges after allegedly failing to notify authorities that his uncle died and then stealing money from the victim’s account.

The Merced County Sheriff’s Department said a relative of a 63-year-old man flagged down deputies and told them the man was dead inside his home on the 2000 block of Beachwood Drive on Monday.

When authorities began investigating the scene, a deputy spotted the victim’s nephew, 45-year-old Patrick Lara, abruptly stop when he drove into view of the home and turn around. Deputies pulled Lara over and began to question him about the gruesome discovery.

Lara allegedly told them he never called for medical attention after his uncle broke his arm on January 22 and died a short time later. Receipts found inside the home indicate that Lara had used the man’s ATM card to get cash from his accounts, even using it to gamble at Chukchansi Casino, according to deputies.

The victim’s body had begun to decay by the time it was discovered, and Lara said the smell forced him to turn on the swamp cooler. The cooler began leaking into the roof, causing it to collapse on the deceased man and coating the remains in mold.

Lara allegedly lived in the house the entire time. Relatives became suspicious when he kept forestalling their visits by making excuses.

Deputies charged Lara with involuntary manslaughter, elder abuse, theft of caretaker, and the charges could be upgraded to murder after the autopsy is completed. He is being held on $175,000 bail.

Comments (50)
  1. James says:

    The DEAD MAN”S nephew, PATRICK is a VICTIM!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. julian says:

    meth and a trailer is a deadly combination.

  3. jim says:

    My brother did the same thing when my our mother died, it’s pathetic.

    1. Calvin says:

      My mother did the same thing when I died. Pathetic.

  4. NoMoreMrNiceGuy says:

    Useless eaters in the New World Order

  5. I believe says:

    The body will die, but all will live forever. God gives you a choice, life with him or life in hell. Real simple stuff

  6. Weird Bobby says:

    Me and my uncle went riding down……

    1. jay says:

      Lara’s ’bout as honest as a Merced man can be

  7. Fanny Forbes Franklen says:

    “Giving every man a vote has no more made men wise and free than Christianity has made them good. ” ~ H. L. Mencken

    http://911essentials.com

    1. fluffy7 says:

      Mencken shunned religion because he was a bitter and sexually frustrated man. Looking for something to blame?

    2. DigitalBob says:

      I think Christianity has made many a man good.

  8. The Defenestrator says:

    Stay classy, Merced.

  9. Testicus says:

    what a piece of sh!t

  10. a is a says:

    Hey Fanny,statistics say otherwise.
    Religious people live longer healthier lives and suffer less mental disorders than those that fight the man.
    Look it up Sunday when most sane people are affirming their existence, whilst you, by definition having no creator, just an accident waiting to happen and therefore have no independent discernible reason to live.
    Enjoy!

  11. bill hicks says:

    oh sure but what about those illegal mexicans running all over the place

  12. Bob says:

    Man, some people, he could at least stuffed the uncle in a freezer.

  13. GOD says:

    People that believe in god are delusional. People that believe god talks to them are mentally ill. People that act on the messages from their unseen friend are psychotic and dangerous.

    AMEN

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