Essex

Panorama care home abuse probe: Women admit assault

External view The Old Deanery
Image caption The abuse took place at the Old Deanery care home in Braintree

Three women accused of assaulting and harassing elderly people at a care home have pleaded guilty to assault.

The care workers were charged after an investigation by the BBC's Panorama programme into the Old Deanery care home near Braintree in Essex.

Adeshola Adediwura, 33, Lorna Clark, 45, and Anita Ray, 47, will be sentenced at Chelmsford Crown Court in February.

Panorama, broadcast in April 2014, showed an elderly woman being slapped.

Essex Police started the investigation into the abuse by Adediwura, of Clockhouse Way, Clark, of Hammond Place, and Ray, of Victoria Street, after detectives saw the programme.

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A care worker, who was seen to slap a resident, had been sacked earlier on after an eyewitness made a statement to independent investigators.

Doug Mackay, district prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service, said: "When a loved one is admitted into a care home, their family trusts the staff to look after them and treat them with respect.

"By their guilty pleas, these three women have shown that they assaulted Mrs Madison and betrayed the trust placed in them by her family."

In April 2014 the Old Deanery's owners Anglia Retirement Homes said managers were "shocked and saddened by allegations made by the BBC's Panorama programme of inappropriate behaviour by some members of staff".

The home is now called the New Deanery Care Home and is owned by Sonnet Care Homes.

Julia Clinton, chief executive of the New Deanery, said it had been an "extremely distressing time for all involved".

"We had only just bought The Old Deanery residential care home when the allegations first surfaced, and we immediately suspended a number of employees.

"We then launched a thorough investigation which culminated in their dismissal.

"In order to reflect we are a new business we changed our name to The New Deanery and have invested substantially in our building and particularly in staff training, and reinforcing our ethos of 'kindness, comfort and respect'."

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