SALT LAKE CITY — A Bountiful man accused of defrauding an elderly business owner of $125,000 pleaded guilty on Monday.
Leslie Jay Price, 66, pleaded guilty to one count of attempted exploitation of a vulnerable adult, a second-degree felony. He was originally charged with exploitation of a vulnerable adult, a second-degree felony.
In exchange for Price's plea to the reduced charge, prosecutors agreed that he will be placed on probation rather than serving time, and Price won't be restricted from owning a firearm.
Price agreed in his plea to have no contact with the victim and her family, and will pay $40,000 in restitution.
Price was sentenced the same day, with a prison term of up to five years suspended while Price completes 36 months of probation.1 comment on this story
Charging documents allege Price met the woman at her business and gained her trust by saying he was dying from hepatitis C. He also told the woman he was a sheriff's deputy and that he had inherited mansions, cattle ranches and mines, charges state.
The woman gave Price large sums of money or made payments for him several times between February and July 2015, frequently selling gold to get the cash. One payment went toward a down payment for the purchase of a GMC Yukon Denali, charges state.
Charges say Price told the woman that $5,000 was stolen from his home and he needed the money replaced. He also tried to intimidate the woman indirectly by saying he would kill anyone who "hurts him," as well as their families, charges allege.