Apr 04, 2022

93-year-old ‘extreme hoarder’ and son left immobile woman to die in ‘filth and squalor’

Hoarder father and son neglect woman

Warning: This story contains content that will be distressing to some readers.

Julie, 61, weighed only 30kg when paramedics were finally called to her home in January 2019, the jury was told.

The three paramedics who came to the residence discovered a “horrific” scene.

“The body appeared thin and frail. There were no signs of life,” the court heard.

Julie was found in a small bedroom at the back of a bungalow “wedged against the bed in a space where there was barely room to move”.

She had “dreadful injuries” and was “surrounded by filth and squalor”.

She died an “awful death,” the court heard.

Prosecutor Timothy Cray QC told the court, Ralph Burdett and his son, Philip, 59 – the woman’s father and brother –neglected Julie to the extent she suffered the horrific injuries for two weeks before she died.

“The central allegation that we make is that their neglect led to Julie’s death and that the neglect was so exceptionally bad that it amounted to the crime of manslaughter,” Cray told the court, according to reports from the BBC.

Philip was paid a carer’s allowance of £60 per week to help his sister, the court heard.

But Cray said Julie was neglected for “weeks and parts of it were deliberate, for example, each defendant decided that they would not call medical or any other help for Julie.”

Cray told jurors, “The failures of care were basic. They did not move Julie, they did not clean her, they did not feed her properly and they did not call for medical or other help.”

Julie died from extreme ulcerations, the court heard, with an expert commenting she had “never seen such a severe level of pressure damage” in her 40-year career.

The court heard the defendants told police they did not call for medical assistance because it was “against Julie’s wishes”.

In opening the case, Cray told the court, “What you are going to hear in this court room is going be hard for you to forget – ever I should think,” the BBC reported.

“Parts of the evidence, at least at the start, are shocking and I’m afraid they might cause you feelings of disgust and even revulsion.

“So, from the start, it is important to understand why you have been brought from your normal lives, in here, and why you have to examine some terrible facts.

“The reason you are here is because someone died, a woman who was called Julie Burdett”, The Mirror reported.

“We, that is the prosecution, say that Julie’s death was entirely avoidable and that the fault for her death lies with these defendants.”

“On the face of it, Julie could have been saved by something as simple as one phone call to any of the medical professionals who had been caring for her for years, or to neighbours who were willing to help, saying that Julie was in serious decline and that they were struggling to cope,” Cray said.

The trial continues.

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  1. I do not understand how any person can cause such horrific suffering, pain and death to another. But a father and a brother—it leaves me speechless.

    There is no justice for this woman.

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