NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A Queens couple has been charged with kidnapping a partially paralyzed woman and controlling her finances for more than a year, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said Tuesday.
Brown said 42-year-old Patrick Donovan and 63-year-old Mae Washington, of Rockaway Park, held the 58-year-old victim against her will at 112-32 Rockaway Beach Boulevard.
1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria Hears From A Neighbor
The woman said she had been repeatedly beaten by her alleged captors, who used their fists and a cane. She also stated that both Donovan and Washington would lock her in her room and on several occasions bound her hands, legs and mouth with tape.
“The defendants are accused of turning the victim’s life into a living nightmare,” Brown said.
The victim turned over all her income from Social Security and other sources to Washington, who was also given power of attorney over her financial affairs, because, as the DA put it, she feared both her and Donovan.
Authorities said that the victim had been residing at an assisted living facility, but one of the defendants — a former neighbor — convinced her to rent a place with them in order to save money.
Neighbor Nicole Nettleford said she called Adult Protective Services after hearing crying and whimpering from the home.
Nettleford also called the victim’s niece, who previously tried to get in touch with her aunt over the phone, in Pennsylvania. The victim’s niece traveled to New York and tried to get Washington to unlock the door.
“They told her ‘get away from my door’ and she called the police,” Nettleford told 1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria.
The DA said police found the victim partially paralyzed and lying on the floor on March 22. The back of her head was bloodied and she had several broken bones, D’Auria reported. The woman, the DA said, had been living with the defendants since Jan. 1, 2011.
Washington and Donovan told the responding officer that the victim fell off the toilet the night before and did not want to go to the hospital.
“Once out of the safe and secure environment of her assisted living facility, the victim was allegedly betrayed by the defendants whom she thought she could trust,” Brown said.
At the hospital, the victim was found to have a dislocated shoulder, a broken arm, broken ribs, internal bleeding in her skull and several lacerations and bruises to her arms and legs. The DA also said that the victim was made to clean up after the defendants’ dog and multiple cats despite being partially paralyzed.
Washington and Donovan have been charged with first-degree kidnapping, first- and second-degree assault, first-degree unlawful imprisonment and endangering the welfare of an incompetent or physically disabled person. Both were arraigned on March 24.
Both defendants were ordered held without bail and will return to court on April 5. They could face 25 years to life in prison if convicted.
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