A North County man faces prison time and restitution payments after admitting to stealing the life savings of an 82-year-old woman assigned to his care.
The 10News I-Team first exposed how the elderly woman's caretaker, 50-year-old Steve Lopez, drugged her and robbed her.
In a Vista courtroom Thursday, Lopez admitted his guilt.
"I thought the young man would be taking my money for the purpose of paying my bills," Celia Ballis said in May.
Bank surveillance picture caught Lopez and Ballis withdrawing her money.
Prosecutors said Lopez drugged Ballis and took her to several banks, where she withdrew or transferred more than $100,000.
Tellers at one bank told investigators that "Ballis did not speak" and "appeared to them to not understand what was occurring."
"I think justice is done," Deputy Attorney General Hardy Gold said.
Gold gave Lopez deal: a guilty plea, spend three years in prison and pay Ballis back.
Ballis' son, Brian, wanted Lopez to get more time.
"I hope that he suffers at least half as much as we did," he said.
Lopez's mother, Mila Labayen, accepted three years probation for violating state labor code. She ran the Escondido home where Ballis lived and Lopez worked. Authorities said Labayen can never operate a residential care facility again.
"I'm going to go over there and tell her today and I'm sure I'll get a big smile out of her," Brian Ballis said when asked about his mother's reaction.
Copyright Do you have more information about this story? Click here to contact usCopyright 2011 by 10News.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.