MEDFORD, Ore. — Gary Bossingham of Medford has little left to his name after the years-long abuse he endured from a woman who was neither friend nor family.
But as he laughs and flexes a muscle with the son his convicted abuser once told him had died, Bossingham now lives a life surrounded by love.
On March 10, 2017, Bossingham weighed 115 pounds and was barely cognizant when Karin Franziska Boldt, 58, rolled him into Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center “a day and a half away from death,” says his son, Bryan Bossingham of Medford.
“He was a stick,” Bryan says.
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Gary, who recently celebrated his 82nd birthday, is now more than 60 pounds heavier and far more alert. Bryan attributes his rebound to a hospital nurse with the courage to intervene.
A simple blood test found alarming levels of liquid morphine and “a half dozen, plus” psych medications, Bryan said. A second senior victim named in the court case against Boldt came to the hospital nine days later under Boldt’s care in strikingly similar condition, according to police and prosecutors.
From there began a complex elder-abuse case that’s led to six figures’ worth of property fraud and financial abuse, and a looming prison sentence for Boldt.
Boldt pleaded no-contest to felony counts of second-degree assault, first-degree criminal mistreatment and aggravated theft last month, and will be sentenced Aug. 31.
A no-contest plea is not an admission of guilt, but has the same legal consequences as a guilty plea. Bryan, who attended Boldt’s July 20 plea hearing, said she still insisted at the hearing that she was helping the seniors under her care.
Medford police say that Boldt attempted to put the seniors into hospice care with the druggings.
It was during a Feb. 28 grand jury hearing against Boldt that Bryan said he learned that there’s typically no death investigation after hospice care.
“She wanted him dead,” Bryan said.
By Oregon law, the medical examiner is not involved in investigating deaths that occur when a person is in hospice, according to Jackson County sheriff’s Sgt. Julie Denney. A primary care physician assumes responsibility when a person is placed on hospice, and the doctor signs the death certificate.
In both hospitalizations, Boldt reportedly presented herself as the seniors’ daughter despite no relation between any of the three parties by blood or marriage.
Gary met Boldt about a decade ago after he moved to San George Estates, a manufactured home community in south Medford.
After Gary’s divorce about a decade ago, Boldt gradually stepped in as a caretaker with a calm presence and religious demeanor, and preyed on his fear of being alone.
“She was in his ear all the time,” Bryan said.
Boldt manipulated Gary to say “horrible things” to his former wife and other family.
“The family just backed away,” Bryan said, adding that he’d still visit for years in the early 2010s to maintain contact, but the relationship was strained.
“And there would start to be new cars in the driveway,” Bryan said, describing them as purchases Boldt orchestrated in Gary’s name from used-car lots.
She orchestrated a move to a larger double-wide manufactured home, and would make transfers from Gary’s account into one of several accounts in her name or an alias.
Boldt has gone by aliases that include Karin Tinney, Karin Karly Boldt, Karin Ruf and Karin Jacob, according to criminal and civil court records.
Bryan said he tried to separate Boldt from his father, but by about 2014 Boldt had pitted his father against him.
“Emotionally I just couldn’t handle it anymore,” Bryan said.
Boldt moved Gary to Washington state and the small town of Lovington, New Mexico, by 2015. Bryan would sporadically check on his father’s whereabouts, spending “sleepless nights” at the computer, but he said he had no idea Gary was back in Southern Oregon until he was contacted as next-of-kin at the hospital in March 2017.
Boldt had told him that his son had died, Gary said in a lucid moment.
Gary has prostate cancer that metastasized to his bones and struggles with dementia.
By the time Bryan stepped in, his father’s possessions fit in a box, and 41 accounts in his name were in collections and five cars in his name had been repossessed. His only income is a $165 monthly pension.
“That’s what he gets for working his whole life,” Bryan said.
His next focus, Bryan said, is collecting as many of his father’s possessions as he can from pawn shops across multiple states.
“I’d hate to see everything gone.”
Bryan said he “wants to see justice” for Boldt, saying that the druggings exacerbated his father’s memory problems. But Bryan is grateful for the time he’s spent with his father.
“I got to know my dad more in the past year and a half than I did my entire life,” Bryan said.
Gary said he recalls the days when he owned his own construction business, heavy equipment and “several Lincolns.”
“I made a fortune, but I don’t know where the hell it went,” Gary said.
“Oh, we know,” Bryan said.