Carer convicted of ill-treating 88-year-old victim

12/05/2015

A 54-year-old carer has today been sentenced to two months imprisonment at Wolverhampton Crown Court after she admitted to ill-treating and neglecting an 88-year-old dementia sufferer who was partially sighted and doubly incontinent.

Julie Hamilton from Willenhall was one of a team of carers who were employed to assist the victim with her daily living needs which included assisting her with eating and drinking as the victim was unable to do this herself.

One of the team members became concerned with the wellbeing of the victim and conducted an investigation. With the permission of the victim's family she installed a hidden camera at the flat which showed that Hamilton was not performing the duties which she had been tasked to carry out.

The footage showed the defendant was not feeding the victim properly, nor providing her with sufficient fluids and was treating her roughly. The camera caught the defendant helping herself to the victim's food and heating food up and immediately disposing of it to the victim to make it look like the victim had eaten it.

The matter was referred to the police who later arrested Hamilton and charged her with ill-treatment and neglect of a person who lacked capacity. She pleaded guilty to this charge at court.

Martin Lindop, District Crown Prosecutor from West Midlands Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), said:

"Today's sentencing is important in showing that we take the criminal mistreatment of vulnerable and elderly people seriously.

"Concerns over the level of care being given by Julie Hamilton were raised by a member of staff who investigated the matter and reported their findings to the police.

"Targeting the elderly and the vulnerable and those unable to speak out for themselves makes a crime even more serious, so it is important that we bring the perpetrators to justice whether they be strangers, family members, or professional carers, as in this case.

"Living free from crime is a basic human right and today I urge anyone suffering from criminal mistreatment, to be confident that the CPS understands the serious nature of these crimes, and to report this to the police."