A MAN and his daughter were arrested and charged with elder abuse after the man’s 72-year-old wife was found dead in the living room.
Walter Alfred Hawkins, 74, is also facing a manslaughter charge while he and his daughter, Christy Lee Hawkins, 45, was hit with a count of neglect.
The body of Janice Ramsey Hawkins was found inside the home on March 16 while her husband and daughter were also present. The home’s living conditions prompted police to investigate the scene.
Valley Police Chief Mike Reynolds said the living room was cluttered and infested with roaches and stray animals.
“It has been one of the more gruesome cases that I’ve seen in my time,” said Reynolds.
He added that it was obvious that the cats found inside the home did not use litter boxes.
“The ammonia smell, the feces were on the floor, roaches everywhere in this home and especially on the body itself.”
The husband and daughter were arrested over a month later in connection to her death. Janice’s husband was her caregiver, who called police the day she was found dead.
“Initially when he called 911, he didn’t ask for an ambulance or the police. He called for the coroner,” said Reynolds.
It was later revealed from an autopsy report that Janice’s cause of death was “failure to thrive” associated with complications from diabetes.
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The failure to thrive portion listed the following reasons, according to police: malnutrition, sunken eyes and prominent ribs, dehydration as evidenced by skin tenting and deplorable living conditions, dirty clothing and foul odor and roach infestation.
“Our detectives found that she had not been to a doctor since 2019. And none of her medications had been refilled since 2018,” said Reynolds.
“We’ve been out to this residence on numerous occasions – I think 40 plus occasions since 2014 and a majority of that was due to domestic violence.”
The husband and daughter were both transported to the Chambers County Detention Facility pending a bond hearing, read a statement from the Valley Police Department.