Louise Rosen is left homeless and penniless
Bill Strunk makes threats and accusations
But where should Rosen go? In California, she had rented a condo from her family at below-market rates. In her absence, the condo was sold. Strunk had convinced her to get rid of her SUV. She had lost many of her clients. Rosen had no home, no car and no money. Desperate for funds, she attempted to sell the Lady of Guadalupe pendant, which Strunk had wanted her to keep in a safe. A jeweler told her the diamonds were fakes, and it was totally worthless.
Rosen went to a lawyer, who drafted a four-page letter to Strunk’s lawyer, Gary Zadick. It stated, in part:
My client is quite upset about this entire situation because she made a number of decisions based on Mr. Strunk’s representations and promises which have now devastated her life, her finances and her livelihood. The fact that the item of jewelry was not genuine and its value was misrepresented serves to underscore this entire situation as well as reveal the deceptive intentions of Mr. Strunk. The facts of the matter are that Mr. Strunk engaged in fraudulent misrepresentations and made many other promises to Dr. Rosen in order to entice her to leave her practice, her condo and ultimately her way of life to engage in business with him and to live with him in Montana. She believed his promises to be genuine and accepted his gifts and affections as coming from the heart. However, at this point in time, she is homeless, without a car and penniless.
The letter demanded conveyance of the Dodge Durango she was driving to Rosen, transportation of her remaining belongings, reimbursement for storage expenses and loss of income, and payment for the work Rosen did for Strunk in Montana.
Bill Strunk launches smear campaign
Strunk started calling Rosen and her daughter, threatening to report the Dodge Durango as stolen. In a letter dated November 21, 2004, Strunk wrote, in part:
The Police, The Sheriff, The Prosecutors, and The Many Attorneys of the County, State, and Federal Court, Gary Zadick said will possibly be wanting to talk to you. So you will have an opportunity to tell it to the Judges. A chance to show your considerable charm and use you’re very many talented, articulate skills. I have been receiving calls on your current letter.
I have The Time, Effort, Energy, Assets, Knowledge, Skills, and The Resolve, The Awareness, and All Important, Common Sense, plus The Laws and The Law Enforcement System, The Court System too, as they say to “take it to the wire.” It’s a Mighty Big Job and Risky one to try and Convert a Dealer vehicle across State Line. Especially when there is a lien at the bank. It is a misguided venture and certainly Impossible. It Will Not Happen. Trust Me! For every Action there will be a Reaction! You currently have my full time and Undivided Attention.
The next day Strunk called the California herb dealer who introduced Rosen to him. Strunk accused Rosen of stealing, embezzling and forging credit cards. “She cannot drive that unit past Wednesday,” Strunk said. “They will put her in jail.” He also faxed a handwritten note to Rosen:
Louise-49 Hours and the 2001 Dodge you Took without Authorization with Montana Dealer plates will be Turned in as Theft. Don’t claim you’re my Agent your NOT.
“Clock is Ticking”
Save SPARKY & clear Head, Adjust, SAVE YOURSELF!
Then Strunk faxed a rambling nine-page, handwritten note, with sentences written in all directions, on November 29. “You can ask for 1 million, you and your lawyer will get 0-take that to the bank,” it read. Strunk accused her of mail fraud, credit card fraud and bank fraud. He wrote that he had been to the police department three times and would be making more theft reports. Strunk also wrote that the dog, Sparky, brought mold into the house, and that Rosen wasn’t much of a cook and housekeeper. (Download pdf)
Strunk then ran a 4-inch by 5-inch newspaper ad, offering a $500 reward for locating Louise Rosen and the Dodge Durango. The ad included a large picture of Rosen and Sparky.
Rosen went into hiding, moving in with a friend in a remote location. She stopped driving the vehicle for fear of getting picked up by the police or a bounty hunter.
Right before Christmas, Rosen left the Durango in a hospital parking lot in San Luis Obispo and sent the keys to Strunk’s lawyer.
But the issue was far from over. On January 3, 2005, Strunk wrote another letter to Rosen, telling her that the expenses he incurred to retrieve the vehicle would be added to the auto theft charge. He then accused her of damaging his house, and said she would be facing insurance fraud because of it.
In another letter dated January 12, 2005, Strunk said he continued to talk to the police and the Cascade County District Attorney, Brent Light. If necessary, he said, he would place another ad in the San Luis Obispo Tribune. He had also been in contact with the Nature’s Sunshine fraud department.
Five days later Strunk faxed Rosen an article about women in prison. In reply, Rosen sent Strunk an e-mail, in care of his daughter, demanding that he stop the threats, letters and accusations.
On January 20, Strunk had his daughter send another e-mail to Rosen. He offered to locate a vehicle for her use and eventual ownership. Then he wrote:
95% of your legal problems I would personally void, have dismissed, drop charges, nullify, write letters, fax, and phone. Authorities will listen to me. The other 5% interested on your behalf and open the door to getting a settlement to clear accounts. I know how to make this issue work.
When I hear from Gary Zadick that you have given notarized release by fax, e-mail or letter that you have no interest and hold me harmless, within one hour I will phone, fax, e-mail or write all agencies, the bank, Herb Companies, post office, police, Brent Light, County Attorney, etc. All of them.
For the next six weeks, Rosen tried to work out a settlement with Strunk. On March 8, 2005, Strunk refused to reach an agreement.
That same day, Strunk filed a credit card fraud report on for supplements Rosen bought with his credit card on October 7, 2004-a month before she left him. Scrawled on the paperwork he faxed to the bank was, “Fraud, Theft, ID Theft, Mail Fraud, Conversion Attempted, Auto Grand Theft,” and, “She is not a doctor! M.D.”
Later that month, Rosen received an e-mail from the Great Falls police detective that read, “The County Attorney has determined that the case is civil and that no charges would be filed.”
Rosen went before a Cascade County judge on May 8, 2005 and got a temporary order of protection against Strunk.
She spoke to approximately 15 Montana attorneys. None would take her case.
Finally, one attorney agreed to make a phone call on Rosen’s behalf to Strunk’s attorney, pointing out that Strunk may have violated some laws, such as stalking and extortion.
The attorneys agreed that neither party would contact the other. Rosen hasn’t heard from Strunk since.
Bill Strunk Paper tiger
While she was receiving all the threats, Rosen was scared. “I was very, very frightened,” she says. “I had no idea what he was going to do, and at that point, I did not doubt his ability or power to do those things.
“I am still haunted by the specter of the abusive, threatening and intimidating manner in which he reacted, and although I’d like to think he’s just a paper tiger, the fear and the anxiety I live with everyday are real and I don’t know if it’s ever going to go away. I find it difficult to take people at their word and I don’t know if I’ll ever regain any degree of trust or feel safe again.”
Rosen still feels that Bill Strunk should be held accountable in a court of law for his actions.