Court: Morley care home worker abused elderly

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Elderly residents were verbally and physically abused over a two-month period by a carer at a Morley residential home.

Christopher Horncastle, 41, was reported to police by his own colleagues who witnessed the offences at the privately-run Vivian House care home in Brunswick Street after noting a change in his attitude.

Horncastle was given a suspended prison sentence over the spate of offences against residents, who were aged between 70 and 90.

He pleaded guilty at Leeds Crown Court to four offences of neglect of a person lacking capacity.

Sam Andrews, prosecuting, told the court Horncastle, of Askey Crescent, Morley, had admitted to hitting or “clipping” victims on the head in two of the offences.

He was arrested in March last year and initially denied the offences. He claimed his colleagues and the victims were telling lies about him.

The court heard Horncastle had a previous conviction for stealing from someone who was in the care of a the local authority.

Nicholas De La Pore, mitigating, said Horncastle was under stress during the period of offending and was sorry for what he had done.

The barrister said Horncastle also suffered from post traumatic stress disorder as a result of a head injury he suffered when he was the victim of an attack when he was younger.

Judge Paula Tyler gave Horncastle a 26-week prison sentence, suspended for two years, and made him the subject of a two-year supervision order.

The judge said: “Those residents at Vivian House were entitled to expect a proper level of care.

“You have betrayed the trust not only of the residents and their families, but the care home, your employers and society at large.”