CLEVELAND -- A county judge acquitted a couple accused of stealing more than $120,000 from their grandfather, a retired Cleveland cop who let them move in to save money for a house.
Cuyahoga County Judge Robert McClelland said that, while it was clear Adrienne and Frank Dye were "spending like drunken sailors," he could not say they had committed a criminal act.
"The court can only speculate, which doesn't equate to proof beyond a reasonable doubt," McClelland said, following a two-week bench trial.
The Dyes were clearly relieved after the verdict, but Leo Hayes, the man they were accused of stealing from, called them "Judases" for what they did to him.
Hayes let his granddaughter, Adrienne, and her husband move into his Richmond Heights home so they could save money.
Prosecutors alleged that the couple ran up more than $120,000 on Hayes' credit and debit cards, as well as on a line of credit in Hayes' name.
Prosecutors presented numerous charges on Hayes credit card to stores like Victoria's Secret, Apple Computer, and Wigs'N'Things as proof.
The Dyes countered that they were authorized by Hayes to make the purchases. Adrienne Dye had power of attorney to sign for such purchases, according to the court.
McClelland said it "looks like there are shenanigans" going on with the use of the credit cards, but he couldn't be certain whether it was "sloppy book keeping or some criminal act."