Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Rochester NH man accused of neglecting his elderly mother, 85

G. Thomas Bickford
Wolfeboro, NH.   After failing to plan for his mother's long term care, a Rochester, NH, man faces felony charges for neglecting his elderly mother.

According to the Fosters Daily Democrat,
Leo Gordon Carter, 55, of 12 Crockett St., was indicted on Class B felony charges of criminal neglect of an elderly, disabled or impaired adult and second-degree assault as well as a misdemeanor charge of endangering the welfare of an incompetent person.

Fosters reported "according to a news release from the New Hampshire Attorney General's Office, in July 2010, emergency medical services responded to Carter's residence, where he was the sole caretaker of his 85-year-old, bedridden mother. The woman was found to be suffering from malnutrition, severe dehydration and infected bedsores.

An indictment is not an indication of guilt; rather, it means a grand jury has found sufficient evidence to warrant a trial."

According to WMUR TV,
"investigators said Leo Gordon Carter, 56, called for an ambulance in July 2010 because his mother was unconscious.

Rescue workers said Elsie Carter, 85, was taken to Frisbee Memorial Hospital, just down Crockett Street, where mother and son lived.

Medical staff said they alerted the authorities after they found that Elsie Carter was malnourished, dehydrated and covered with infected bed sores.

"She (Elsie Carter) was also covered in dried feces and urine, had urine burns on her back and there were also insects crawling on her at the time she was admitted to the hospital," Assistant Attorney General Tracy Culberson said.

Investigators said that Elsie Carter's son is her sole caregiver.

Elsie Carter, who suffered from dementia, stayed at the hospital for one month before she was transferred to a nursing home, where her health improved; but investigators said she died just four months after first going to the hospital."

While an extreme case, caregivers can reach out to State and local area agencies for help with caring for their loved ones, before they become overwhelmed. Such agencies include ServiceLink 1-866-634-9412, and your own doctor for a referral to your local visiting nurses agency or private home care agency.

Seniors and their caretakers can avoid similar situations by consulting with an elder law attorney and exploring their long term care options, including long term care insurance for in-home and nursing home care, personal care contracts with their children and Medicaid Home and Community Care Benefits and Nursing home benefits.  I would be glad to help you explore your long-term-care options for the future or right now.  Feel free to call me at (603) 569-0241 or write to me, Tom Bickford, to make an appointment.

If you are concerned that someone is unable to take care of themselves or is being physically neglected, abused, or financially exploited, you can make a confidential call to the NH Bureau of Elder and Adult Services (BEAS) at (603) 271-7014 or Toll Free from within NH at (800) 949-0470.

When you tell BEAS that your worried that a senior is unable to care for themselves, (also known as self-neglect) BEAS will start a confidential investigation to see if a senior living alone can care for themselves and, if not, what services can be provided to help them to remain living independently in their own home. When alerted to cases of caregiver neglect BEAS conducts a similar investigation into the allegations and if providing services to the caregiver can solve the problem. In cases of criminal neglect and intentional abuse and financial exploitation, BEAS will work with the local police and NH Attorney General's office to protect the victim and prosecute the perpetrator.

Your calls to NH BEAS are always confidential.

Please visit us at