72-year-old Muncie woman accused of abusing relative with Down syndrome, autism

Abuse allegations (WISH Photo)

MUNCIE, Ind. (WISH) — A Muncie woman has been charged with domestic battery against a disabled person, and investigators said the allegations involve a relative with Down syndrome and autism.

Police learned about the allegations over the summer from a home health care worker.

The worker told police she was helping 72-year-old Judith Jones care for Jones’ relative when she began to suspect abuse and caught some of the abuse on camera.

In a quiet neighborhood near Fleetwood and Breezewood drives, some neighbors told 24-Hour News 8 they heard about the allegations of abuse, while other neighbors had no idea.

“Well, surprised, but I guess you never know what’s going on in the neighbor’s house,” said one neighbor.

The longtime neighbor did not want to be identified on camera. She said she has seen Jones before in passing.

“We just wave, and she waves, ask her how her husband is doing, and that’s about it,” she said.

According to court documents, a home health care worker told police about the allegations of abuse in early July.

The worker told police Jones would use “Clorox wipes to wipe out the victim’s mouth, would bend her fingers back, smack her on the mouth and follow her in a vehicle while she walked in front of it.”

The home health care worker also told police that Jones would “eat sweets in front of the victim and only give the victim water and the victim would not eat what everyone else would eat.” Documents show the victim is 26 years old.

“Seen people taking her for a walk, giving her exercise and stuff,” the neighbor said. “They’ll take her down the road, just bring her and then take her around the circle and bring her back.”

Police said Jones came in for an interview in late July and denied abusing the victim. Documents show when police showed her several video clips of herself and the victim, she stated that she was going to stop the interview, and she asked for an attorney.

“I feel sorry that all of this has come about, you know, and I hope they can get things straightened out,” the neighbor said.

When 24-Hour News 8 stopped by Jones’ house Monday to ask her about the allegations, she came to the door and said “I’m not talking to TV.”

As of Monday, a new court date for Jones had not been set.