Police investigate how disabled woman sustained injuries in Londonderry care homes

  • 29 April 2014
Lady in bed
Vivienne Peoples is 40 years old and has the mind of a child

Police are investigating how a severely disabled Derry woman sustained serious injuries in residential care homes in Londonderry.

Vivienne Peoples, 40, suffers from cerebral palsy and complex epilepsy.

Her family has produced a photo of her with unexplained facial cuts, which, they say, she sustained when she was a resident at Belmont Cottages care home.

Apex, the Housing Association that runs Belmont Cottages, said it could not comment on individual cases.

The family of Ms Peoples have said she sustained the injuries when she was a resident at the care home three years ago.

Vivienne's sister Nicola Hamilton told BBC Radio Foyle that she wants to know how she sustained her injuries.

'Retention wire'

"Between March and May 2011 she suffered a black eye on both eyes on separate occasions, a busted lip on two separate occasions and she had to have stitches inside her lip.

"They found her lying in a pool of blood in the corridor and when she was taken to hospital they discovered that her elbow had been fractured.

"As a result she had to have a retention wire put in her elbow," she added.

"The staff in Belmont cottages would frequently blame her epilepsy but that couldn't be the case.

"We have looked after her whenever we have her out and she never received injuries to such a degree.

"There hasn't been anybody there when these injuries where sustained. We can't say for definite how they happened.

"She could have fallen and she might not have."

In a statement Apex said it had provided full responses to queries and would continue to do so through the protocol in place with the Western Health and Social Care Trust.

A spokesperson for the trust said: "The Western Trust and PSNI are jointly investigating allegations of abuse in an independent sector facility. In the interest of patient and client confidentiality we are unable to comment further on this individual case."