In an extremely sad case of apparent disregard of a 60-year-old Columbia wife and mother, her husband and daughter have been charged of abusing or neglecting a vulnerable adult in the mother’s death. Lexington County deputies arrested the pair on December second and according to a Columbia news source their bond has been set at $75,000 after a hearing last Tuesday.
A Lexington County Sheriff indicated that this was the most severe adult abuse he has seen in his 43 years as an officer. When arrived at the hospital on December first, the mother weighed all of 48 pounds and was riddled with maggot infected bedsores. Due to diabetes-related complications, the mother had both legs amputated, had been bedridden for the past 14 years and primarily under the care of her husband and daughter.
According to the Lexington County Coroner, the autopsy was inconclusive as to the exact cause of death, but more test are to be conducted in an effort to determine what happened to the woman.
In the eyes of Charleston elderly abuse attorneys, this tragic case serves a larger purpose of reminding South Carolinians that treatment of vulnerable populations needs to be made a priority, such as the frail elderly in nursing homes and innocent children. Abuse to these sub-populations often falls under the radar because of their seemingly limited social benefit, because they are not working or making a living. Human life is valuable regardless of age, status, race, and so on, and proper measures need to be in place to remind people that disregard for defenseless is intolerable.
As the baby boomer population begins to retire an increasing number of Americans will be either in assisted living facilities or at home with attendant care. Therefore the potential for abuse and neglect for our country’s senior citizens will increase as their numbers grow given that there will be fewer resources and manpower to attend to their needs. Family members should be vigilant in ensuring their loved ones receive proper medical attention and care in these homes and private facilities. In the unfortunate event loved ones do not receive all the benefits they are entitled to family members should be prepared to take immediate legal action to defend and protect those under negligent care.