Care home boss who slapped, spat at, sat on and pulled the hair of elderly dementia sufferers jailed

A care home manager slapped, spat at, sat on and pulled the hair of seven elderly dementia sufferers.

Madelynne Rawle, 61, has been jailed after she admitted abusing elderly residents at the home in Bognor, West Sussex, who had mental health problems.

She was the deputy manager at the specialist Summerley care home and had been working there for two years when the abuse reported in 2018.

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Six of the victims were women and one was a man. All but two of the residents, who suffered from conditions such as dementia, have since died for unrelated reasons, police said.

Madelynne Rawle

All the victims were vulnerable as they needed support 24 hours a day and had to be helped with cleaning themselves, getting dressed and eating.

Rawle was jailed for 30 months

Staff raised the alarm when there was a change of management at the end of 2018 and they told the local authority of their concerns.

Investigating officers found Rawle slapped residents, pulled their hair, spat at them, sat on them, forced them to sit and was verbally abusive, Sussex Police said.

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At Portsmouth Crown Court on Friday (Oct 15), Rawle was handed a 30-month prison sentence after pleading guilty to cruelty against seven people in her charge.

Rawle pleaded guilty to two counts of ill-treating and wilfully neglecting two people without capacity under the Mental Capacity Act 2005 while working as a carer.

She was found guilty of further counts of the same offence against five residents that all took place in 2018 and was found not guilty of one other similar offence.

Victims were ‘vulnerable’ adults who needed 24/7 care

Detective Constable Sarah Lallament of Sussex Police said after the conviction: “Rawle’s victims were vulnerable adults who all required support 24/7 for day to day activities including basic hygiene and getting dressed, and assistance with eating.

“Staff began to be uneasy about Rawle’s conduct, and they took advantage of a change in senior management at the end of 2018 to voice their concerns with the local authority who immediately contacted us and we launched an investigation.

“The current management of the home gave us their full co-operation, and this contributed to the positive outcome of our investigation.

“It is a specialist home, and relatives and the public would expect the care of their relatives to be of a good standard rather than being subject to the verbal and physical abuse to which Rawle subjected them over many months.”