When the daughters of an elderly Alzheimer’s patient became concerned about how their mother was being treated at her care home, they decided to plant a spy camera in her room.
They had already guessed their mother was being mistreated in the home but what they saw in recordings was enough to make their blood boil!
Joy Lewis, who also has Diabetes and Parkinson’s disease, was being brutally abused at Brookside House Care Home in Nottinghamshire.
Joy’s youngest daughter Kelly, 34, had once confronted the home carers after the 71-year-old told her the staff kept her isolated from other residents and didn’t like her.
However, the staff assured Kelly her mother was happy and just ‘confused’.
But during her later visits, Kelly noticed that Joy’s condition was getting worse day-by-day. She had bruises on her wrists and was covered in bed sores.
That’s when Kelly bought a £85 clock camera from Amazon and secretly placed it in Joy’s room. When the daughters looked back over the footage recorded in 2 days, they were shocked to their core.
In the footage, they heard two of the carers verbally abusing their mother. Later in the footage, Joy was seen being dragged out of bed by her wrists and her pleas to use the toilet were ignored by the staff.
She was also refused food and drink and was left sitting in urine despite her begging to be changed.
‘Anyone who can treat another person like that is a vile creature. Watching the footage, seeing mum crying, was heartbreaking,’ said Kelly.
‘She was crying her eyes out, sobbing, begging for basic things, saying she was frightened of dying. No one at the home came to comfort her. It was terrible.’
Joy was admitted to Brookside House, run by Farrington Care Homes Ltd, in February 2017. She has 4 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren and had been a carer herself who looked after elderly and people with dementia.
Following the incident, Joy’s daughters contacted police with the evidence.
The three carers involved – Teresa Cutts, 50, Rebecca King, 32, and Joanne Hardstaff, 39 – admitted charges of ill-treatment at Mansfield Magistrates Court. All of them received suspended sentences and community orders last month.
Rebecca King from Jacksdale was given a 36-week suspended prison sentence along with an order to complete 120 hours of uncompensated work.
Teresa Cutts from Somercotes was given a 24-week suspended prison sentence along with an order to complete 100 hours of uncompensated work.
Joanne Hardstaff from Ironville was given an 8-week suspended prison sentence along with an order to complete 80 hours of uncompensated work.
Joy’s daughters, however, weren’t happy with the light punishments the carers received. The elder daughter Teresa Bestwisk, 47, said: ‘We feel angry their sentences were suspended. They only pleaded guilty because it was all on tape.’
The sisters are now calling for tougher sentences for this type of crime and for CCTV to be compulsory in all care homes.
Brookside House has been closed and Joy now lives in a new care home, where she is much happier.