Help Aunt Barb - Disabled Victim of Unbelievable Elder Abuse - Northridge, CA #SpongeyLeaks
On November 16th, 2016 I received an email from my Aunt Barbie, asking if I would come over and help her pack, because she believed she was going to be evicted from her home in the San Fernando Valley, in 3 days. When I walked through her door - and saw what I saw inside - I knew that our lives would never be the same and I would have to take action.
My Aunt Barbara has had a long, difficult and painful journey with Multiple Sclerosis. It has progressed to the point of a genuine, severe disability... as her muscle spasticity is so bad, that she is mostly bed-bound. When she is out of bed, it's a powered-wheelchair.
She's had an IHSS state-paid, live-in caregiver for the past 19 months, whom was never exactly... fabulous... but he knew what little he had to do, to keep his job.
6 months ago, Aunt Barb's 7-yr boyfriend passed on... and once the caregiver was alone in the house with her, things got much worse.
The video really says it all, and far more quickly than anyone would probably prefer to read. But I'll highlight this:
* The day I walked into the house, I knew I could never leave her alone again - and I immediately dropped my entire life and moved in.
* He kept the blinds closed in her room all day, due to his various paranoias... and refused to open them for her, when asked. I realized she hadn't seen the Sun in months.
* 3 years of steroids (to suppress her MS symptoms) made her skin very thin... if one of her cats jumped on the bed and a claw managed to scratch her, she'd end up with an open wound. When he DID treat her wounds... he didn't seek out medical advice, he didn't call a free Nurse hotline, or reach out to any of the services provided to the disabled through Medi-Cal... he just dabbed her wounds with rubbing alcohol, and wrapped them in wet baby wipes. Be advised, the video will show you worse.
The night after Thanksgiving, I came home to the aftermath of a heated argument between them: the caregiver didn't like my live-in oversight, and wanted me to leave. My Aunt finally gave her blessing for me to take action, and I swiftly took it: I told him it was time for him to get out.
That led to several 911 calls, one of which the caregiver told police that I was under the influence of drugs, and had pointed a loaded firearm at him. Based on that framing - when the police came, within 30 seconds, I was on my knees on the front lawn, with rifles pointed at my skull. No joke. No elaboration.
I'm not sure I'll soon be able to describe in words, what it was like to:
* be a witness to the kind of darkness, cruelty and lack of empathy that you only hear about on the news - and it always happens to "someone else"
* get arrested for the 1st time in my life, while trying to do something profoundly and solidly right, by any measure of moral decency.
* watch my Aunt Barb's eyes, from the back of an LAPD car, as I was driven away in handcuffs, knowing the "caregiver" would have at least one more night alone with my Aunt Barb, essentially helpless.
This video is the first #SpongeyLeak, which isn't even the most egregious. This video's intention is to raise awareness about the Elder Abuse problem, and hope that Ellen will give this a voice better than what TMZ did to me. And, yeah, they covered my arrest... and left the real story untold.
The next leak reveals that Aunt Barb is going to LOSE HER HOUSE. This woman is a kind soul, that is far too trusting, that probably developed some kind of Stockholm Syndrome and learned to cope with abuse because most of her family are all out-of-state, and she felt she had no options. We must ALL BEAR WITNESS to the lives of those around us. This is what happens, when we don't. Please upvote this video!
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