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updated: 9/25/2012 8:23 PM

Police: Musician son bilked elderly South Elgin father

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  • Robert B. Plagemann

    Robert B. Plagemann


An Elgin man is accused of stealing from his elderly father and failing to pay about $100,000 in nursing home expenses for the 90-year-old man, who is living in a South Elgin nursing home, according to police.

Robert B. Plagemann, 51, of the 400 block of North Spring Street, is charged with felony exploitation of an elderly person over 80 and felony theft of over $5,000 from a person over 60, according to court records.

If convicted, he faces up to 15 years in prison on the most severe charge but probation also is an option.

A warrant was issued for Plagemann in early September and he has surrendered to police, South Elgin Sgt. Mike Doty said Tuesday.

Doty said officials at a South Elgin nursing home alerted police after bills for the victim went unpaid.

Doty said the nursing home contends Plagemann didn't pay about $100,000 in costs, and because Plagemann has power of attorney for his father, the younger Plagemann has violated his fiduciary responsibility.

Doty said Plagemann also is accused of stealing at least $5,000 from his father's bank account.

Earlier this year, Plagemann, a trombone instructor and self described musician/composer and teacher, told the Daily Herald he planned to apply for residency in the Artspace project in downtown Elgin, which is an affordable housing 55-unit co-op for artists.

Heidi Kurtze, vice president of properties at Artspace, could not immediately be reached to comment on what effect the criminal charges could have on Plagemann's application.

Plagemann also has been a member of the Northbrook Symphony Orchestra for more than 25 years and is currently trombone principal, said Paul Phillips, orchestra personnel manager. Phillips said he did not have any more information about Plagemann or whether he was facing financial problems.

Efforts to reach Plagemann were not successful, and it was not immediately clear who he hired as his attorney.

Plagemann is free while his case is pending after posting $2,000 bond. His next court date is Nov. 5.

He does not have a previous criminal record in Kane County. In May 2004 he was cited by the city of Elgin for code violations for property in the 400 block of North Spring Street where he served as a landlord, records show.

He eventually paid a $500 fine in January 2007 for a cracked front sidewalk and other violations, records show.

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