According to reports out of Cobb County, former caregiver at a high end assisted living home, Landon Terrel, has been convicted of elder neglect and sentenced to five years in prison this past week.
Terrel was working an overnight shift in August 2017 and was assigned to care for Bennett, a retired businessman and World War II veteran.
Bennett had a bruised face the next morning and reported to another employee that Terrel had beat him. Doctors discovered Bennett had multiple broken ribs, a punctured lung and damaged kidney, and he died three days later.
As a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer, I will outline the offense of elder neglect in the state of Georgia as well as the penalty according to law.
Elder Neglect in Georgia
Elder neglect in Georgia is defined by Georgia Law in O.C.G.A. §16-5-101 as:
A guardian or other person supervising the welfare of or having immediate charge, control, or custody of a disabled adult, elder person, or resident commits the offense of neglect to a disabled adult, elder person, or resident when the person willfully deprives them of health care, shelter, or necessary sustenance to the extent that the health or well-being of such person is jeopardized.
To be found guilty of neglect to a disabled adult, elder person, or resident in Georgia, the State must prove that the accused is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. This involves showing that the person willfully deprived the victim of either health care, shelter, or necessary sustenance so much that their health or well-being was affected.
A conviction for this crime in Georgia carries the consequences of a felony conviction with the penalty being up to 20 years in prison and a fine of no more than $50,000.00 or both prison and a fine.
Terrel was arrested on charges of elder neglect and felony murder in Georgia. However, the crime of felony murder was dropped in the final sentencing, and Terrel was found guilty on the one charge of elder neglect.
Although Terrel was found guilty of the crimes he was accused of committing - not everyone is guilty of the crimes they are accused of committing. Innocent people are arrested more often than we would like to admit.
If you or a loved one has been arrested, contact a Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney now.