May 19 2013 Latest news:
Saturday, June 16, 2012
A Hellesdon Hospital worker was yesterday cleared of ill-treating an elderly dementia patient but convicted of assaulting two other elderly dementia patients by holding them in an “inappropriate” wrist lock.
John Roberts, 44, a clinical support worker who has since been dismissed from his job at the hospital, was found not guilty of ill-treating a 73-year-old dementia patient, saying he acted in self-defence after the patient became violent when he had escorted him to the toilet.
However the jury at Norwich Crown Court convicted him of using a wrist lock on two patients, which was against hospital rules about use “pain control” methods on patients who have a mental disability. The jury took just over four hours to reach their verdicts and Roberts was warned by Judge Nicholas Coleman that he could face jail.
He said “Although these offences do not normally attract a custodial sentence, given the nature of the offence, clearly the custodial threshold is passed.”
Judge Coleman ordered pre-sentence reports and Roberts will return for sentence on July 9.
Andrew Oliver, defending said Roberts has been suffering from depression and said his partner had committed suicide.
“He has been suffering from depression for some time.”
During the trial Roberts, of Stoke Road, Poringland, claimed he was under stress, but did not do anything malicious and the court also heard how all three patients concerned had a history of being violent and aggressive.