The owner of a Brunswick senior housing complex has pleaded not guilty to charges that she committed financial crimes against one of her residents.
Amy McLellan, 61, was arraigned Tuesday at the Cumberland County Courthouse. She was indicted last month on felony counts of theft and misuse of entrusted property of a vulnerable person. She owns The McLellan, an apartment complex for seniors that opened last year.
A dozen other residents and friends sat in the courtroom behind McLellan and her attorney Tuesday. When she stood before the judge, McLellan said little other than to enter her pleas on the two charges. The hearing was brief, and when it ended, her supporters followed her outside to hug and comfort her.
McLellan and her attorney, Kristine Hanly, declined to comment outside the courtroom.
McLellan is a registered nurse with an active license from the Maine State Board of Nursing. In 2016, she purchased a former nursing home on Cumberland Street in Brunswick and renovated it to become assisted living for people 62 years and older. The building has 18 apartments in addition to an owner’s residence. McLellan told The Times Record in a 2016 interview that she would be the resident nurse on the property.
Under the two charges, McLellan is accused of misusing property entrusted to her by David Fratus, resulting in a loss of more than $10,000. She also is accused of committing theft “by obtaining or exercising unauthorized control over a business loan, property of Norway Savings Bank, of a value more than $10,000, with the intent to deprive Norway Savings Bank of the property.”
Assistant District Attorney Amanda Doherty said the second charge is related to allegations that McLellan wrongfully obtained her loan by misrepresenting where she was getting the money that would serve as collateral.
Earlier this year, McLellan settled a civil lawsuit with David and Frances Fratus for an undisclosed amount of money. Their attorney has said the agreement “serves to reimburse” the couple. Police moved David and Frances Fratus out of The McLellan on the day they executed the search warrant there.
A background check showed McLellan has never faced other criminal charges in Maine. The two charges are Class B crimes, punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine. Her next court date is a dispositional conference in December.
Amy McLellan in 2016. (Times Record file photo)