Dorothea Puente Case

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Describe the case in detail
A 51 years old schizophrenic Bert Montoya was placed to live at Dorothea’s home by her social worker, Judy Moise. According to Judy, Dorothea told her that she was in the 70s and she actually was a nurse during WWII. She was known for donate money and cloths to charity and employee people in parole. She welcomed everyone in her home. Dorothea’s tenants were elderly people with health problems including: o James Gallop, 62 years old, with a brain tumor. o Dorothy Miller a 64 years old woman with alcoholic problems. o Betty Palmer and Leona Carpenter were 78 years old and they could not support for themselves.
Dorothea’s tenants received benefits and Dorothea knew how to get even more benefits for their residents.
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If they inform the police, they can start an investigation. The health care institution also should make sure that elderly people attend to their appointments because that way they can know if elderly people receive an adequate treatment in their homes.
Clearly identify the perpetrator and describe the circumstances leading to the abuse of the elder (risk factors)
The perpetrator was a 59 years old women named Dorothea Puente.
Factors leading to the abuse includes: alcohol and substance abuse, gender of victim, social isolation, health problems and loss of family and friends.
Most of the victims did not have friends or family that could verify their living situation.
Ruth Munroe, Dorothy Miller and Benjamin Fink had alcoholic problems which make them more vulnerable to the abuse.
James Gallop had health problems, a brain tumor, as result he did not have financial support to go to another place.
Betty Palmer and Leona Carpenter could not support for themselves, and therefore they have to obey what Dorothea might ask.
Most of the victims were females and that make them more vulnerable for
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Was anyone criminally charged? If so, what were the charges?
Dorothea was criminally charged with nine counts of murder.
Did the case go to trial? If yes, what was the outcome for the defendant?
The case went to trial for 43 days. Dorothea was guilty of first-degree murder in the deaths Benjamin Fink and Dorothy Miller and second-degree murder in the death of Leona Carpenter. The judge declare mistrial for the other six counts.
If criminally charged, list the defendant’s charges and describe if it is a misdemeanor or felony with outlines of sentencing guidelines.
First and second degree murder are considered felony.
What if?
This case could be different if the social workers had investigated the background information about Dorothea Puente before they place older people in her hand. Dorothea already had criminal charges and was in prison for 5 years for drugging people. In addition, this could be another story if the social workers had investigated why elder people with health problems disappear without any explanation from Dorothea’s house, especially if more than two people already had disappeared. Finally, if the community (neighborhood) had called the police when there was a terrible odor in the garden, the police could investigate it sooner. Finally, there should be a law that obligate the community and hospital to inform about abuse/
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