Woman, 81, rescued from ‘horrific’ abuse

AN 81-YEAR-OLD woman with dementia has been rescued from a house south of Sydney following an horrific case of elder abuse.

Concerned neighbours called police after hearing the elderly woman being subjected to shocking treatment inside her home in the seaside suburb of Thirroul in Wollongong about 10.45pm on Friday.

When officers arrived, they allegedly heard shouting, moaning and multiple slapping sounds coming from the back of the home.


In a statement, a NSW Police spokesperson said officers counted approximately 11 “slapping noises”.

After walking around to the back of the unit, officers peered through a window and saw a 28-year-old woman walking the elderly woman from the bathroom, through the kitchen and into the loungeroom.

What happened next could only be described by the attending officers as “disgraceful”.

The younger woman allegedly allowed the elderly woman to fall over before shouting at her like a dog and punching her in the upper thigh with a closed fist.

As the 81-year-old tried to stand back up, it’s alleged the 28-year-old pulled her legs out from under her, causing her to fall on her back.

That’s when police say officers burst into the house and arrested the younger woman.

It’s alleged she had only recently become the dementia patient’s carer and legal guardian.

The elderly woman was taken to Wollongong Hospital with swelling, bruising and scratches to her face and legs.

Speaking at a press conference on Saturday afternoon, Inspector Don Faulds said the woman was now being cared for by hospital staff.

“They are looking at some short term accommodation and then obviously some long term accommodation for her which will keep her safe and well,” he said.

The 28-year-old woman was taken to Wollongong Police Station where she was charged with domestic assault and elder abuse.

She was refused bail to appear in Wollongong Bail Court on Saturday.

Inspector Faulds praised the actions of the neighbours who called police.

“In this instance one call from the public has stopped this horrific act,” he said.

“From that information we were able to act, otherwise we may not have known about it.

“Attending police did a great job with the victim’s welfare until Ambulance arrived.”

Inspector Faulds said elder abuse can be physical, psychological, emotional, or financial.

“These vulnerable people need the communities help to be their voice.”

If you have information for Police, please contact NSW Police on 131 444 or provide information using their online form 24 hours per day. 

You can report also information about crime anonymously to Crime Stoppers by calling 1800 333 000 or via nsw.crimestoppers.com.au 24 hours per day. Crime Stoppers is a registered charity and community volunteer organisation.