Couple Sentenced to Prison After the Murder of Fellow Assisted Living Facility Resident

Wednesday a judge rejected a bid for a conditional sentence over the role that a woman played in the killing and disposal of a 41-year-old woman at an assisted living facility last year. The judged sentenced the 19-year-old woman, to 25 months in prison for being an accessory after the fact in the murder.

On May 14, 2010, she watched a 33-year-old male resident, strangle a female resident over a $20 drug debt inside his room at the facility, a residence for people with mental illness or cognitive problems. The 19-year-old had recently been evicted from her own room because of her relationship with the male resident, and was secretly staying in his room at the time, according to evidence presented at her sentencing hearing earlier this month.

She could have saved the resident's life -but instead she made a conscious decision not to seek help for the other woman, the judge noted. The male resident stuffed the petite woman's body into a suitcase belonging to the 19-year old, and together, they drug it to a dumpster outside the facility.

The two were arrested a few days later. The male resident pleaded guilty last July to second-degree murder and is now serving a life sentence. For more, read the story.

Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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