Illinois Governor. Bruce Rauner signed House Bill 1588 Wednesday, informally known as "Perry's Law." It makes it much more difficult to prey on the elderly.
The new law surfaces from a case in Iroquois County. And the name, "Perry's Law," has everything to do with 82-year-old Perry Bitzel. The dementia patient lives at the Gilman Healthcare Center. He became a fraud victim when his grandson, who became Bitzel;s legal guardian, allegedly cleaned out Bitzel's bank account. Two houses owned by Bitzel were also sold.
Perry's law now allows victims who have been exploited to seek retribution through Civil Court action.
The victim or the victim's family can pursue a civil case. That's even if no criminal charges have been filed.
No charges have been filed against the grandson, but another grandson—Shawn Bitzel of Crescent City--- worked with his cousin, Susan Wynn Bence to get lawmakers attention. Susan Bence works for Illinois Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti.
Representative Tom Bennett, R-Gibson City, and Senator Jason Barickman, R-Bloomington wrote the new law.
Perry and his family along with staff members of the Gilman Healthcare Center were in Springfield to witness the bill's signing.