The attorney for a Bettendorf couple accused of financially exploiting an elderly family member said Wednesday he has filed for an appellate court review of a ruling that the case can be heard in Rock Island County
Dennis Stoffel, 57, and Laura Stoffel, 58, are accused of breaking an agreement with Mrs. Stoffel's then 81-year-old stepmother, by using money she gave them to purchase a Bettendorf home, but then not allowing her to move in.
Rock Island County Circuit Court Judge F. Michael Meersman on Monday had rejected attorney Jack. A. Schwartz's contention that the the case could not be tried in Rock Island County since conversations and banking transactions between the Stoffels concerning the house purchase took place both in Illinois and across the river in Scott County.
The motion further contended the case was not a criminal one, but rather a breach of contract issue for civil court.
Judge Meersman denied both motions, ruling there was enough probable cause to constitute criminal charges and that Rock Island County was the proper venue for the case since, among other things, the victim lived there.
Assistant State's Attorney Jim Wozniak, who objected to the delay, said the matter is "in the hands of the third appellate district, and we'll see what happens."
Today is Monday, March 10, the 69th day of 2014. There are 296 days left in the year. 1864 -- 150 years ago: Numerous counterfeiters are around, taking advantage of the influx of currency to pass their worthless trash. 1889 -- 125 years ago: J.J. Reimers, secretary and treasurer of the Rock Island Lumber and Manufacturing Co., on behalf of that firm, contributed $500 toward construction of a new Methodist church. 1914 -- 100 years ago: Samuel Ryerson, county recorder, was re-elected president of the 19th District of Knights of Pythias. 1939 -- 75 years ago: Three condemnation suits have been filed by the city of Rock Island to acquire property needed for an approach to the Rock Island-Davenport bridge, which has been under construction since March 6. 1964 -- 50 years ago: Plans for an eight-story Sheraton Inn in downtown Rock Island were announced today at a luncheon meeting at the Gay Nineties sponsored by the Rock Island Chamber of Commerce. Cost of the structure is estimated at $2.5 million. 1989 -- 25 years ago: Representatives of the Hardee's Golf Classic and tournament sponsor Hardee's Food Systems may meet next week with PGA Tour Commissioner Deane Beman to discuss a possible change in the tournament dates.