Longview, WA (KATU) — Two women are accused of stealing the wallet from a dead man and then going on a shopping spree hours after he died.
While Longview police investigate, the man's family is fighting to get that money back.
Police say the two women were with Robert Younger when he died of a heart attack, but they didn't tell his family.
Younger died at 7 a.m., but his family says they didn't find out until that afternoon when one of Robert's son's called looking for him. By then, police say, the women had taken his debit card and drained his account.
Robert's son, Daniel, says he saw red flags the day his father died. The woman his father was staying with never called the family to let them know what happened. Daniel says when he finally found out he came over to the house and knew something was wrong when the woman Robert was living with lied about trying to contact the family.
"When we went to his house, the first thing I asked was, 'How come I didn't know. I had no idea,'" Daniel said. "They said, 'Well, we tried calling you.' I was like, 'Let me see his phone.' I grabbed my dad's phone and there were no calls on there."
When he couldn't find his father's wallet, he began to worry.
"Then, we had a feeling that something's wrong," Daniel said. "As soon as I got outside, off the property, that's when I called the bank."
Days later he got the bank statement to prove someone had been using his father's debit card after he died.
"Instead of contacting us, they went and spent his money," Daniel said.
That same day, within just a few hours, $500 was withdrawn from a Bank of America ATM, another $300-plus at Safeway, nearly another $500 at the jewelry store at the nearby mall, and then the sporting goods store and clothing store nearby – totaling more than $1,200. That happened all before Daniel even knew his father had died.
"They take his wallet out of his dead body, put it in their pocket, call the coroner (and) as soon as the coroner leaves, they go out and spend thousands of dollars," Daniel said.
The two women suspected in this case have not been arrested or charged. But police say they recently wrapped up their investigation and have just handed it over to the Cowlitz County prosecutor so charges can be filed.