Daughter Pleads Guilty In Elder Abuse Case

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Carolyn James

SCRANTON — A woman from Lackawanna County who was caught on camera abusing her elderly mother entered a guilty plea Wednesday.

Carolyn James from Dickson City pleaded guilty to charges recklessly endangering another person.

A camera recorded her last year beating and screaming obscenities at her 96-year-old mother who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease.

James installed the camera so she could watch her mother online while she worked, but it was a man in Chicago who saw the abuse on a webcam and notified authorities.


  • ME

    Watching this video made me sick. This woman should literally have the book thrown at her. You just don’t treat your mother that way.

  • Gail Yanick

    OMG. If someone abused my mother, i really dont know wjat i would do. Listen lady, your mother gave birth to you, clothed you and fed you. I hope your children do the samw to you.

  • Real Talk

    This lady is literally one of the nicest people I have ever met in my entire life. all of this is complete b.s. She helps everyone and anyone in need.. nobody knows this story. its so beyond exaggerated. no one knows anything that went on through the years. the media is complete bullshit and same goes for 90% of cases. I am not a family member or even a close friend but this is one of the biggest b.s cases i have ever heard or seen.

    • rvancko

      Have you seen the video or read the transcript? One of the local news stations has the actual video in an online report. Just listen to the way she is screaming at her mother as she slaps her around.

      And if it’s BS why did she plead guilty?

      • real talk

        Because pleading guilty was an easier sentence. You can’t fight a video. It looks bad obviously. But do you have any idea what her life has been like? Probably not. As in there is far more to the story then the actual video. The only thing people see are whats bad. You dont no the lady. You don’t bother what she goes through. Not even saying I know everything. But I no enough and see enough to no she is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. People make mistakes and its obviously a terrible situation. You need to realize there’s more to every story then the one the media broadcasts to the world.

    • Ann

      Nice people do not beat their parents & spew obscenities at them. I don’t care what kind of pressure she was under, and yes, I do know what she was going through. I worked with patients with Alzheimer’s & dementia. There are facilities, programs, support groups & more. She knew exactly what she was doing & she knew she had outs when she was feeling the pressure. She’s lucky she was offered a plea deal. Stop making excuses for the inexcusable.

    • Cindy

      Cameras and pictures don’t lie she is just another elder abuser that doesn’t want to take care of her mother the reason she is here on this earth today so don’t really care how sweet she may seem to be she is an ABUSER …

    • ME

      We all saw the video. Granted, she was in a difficult situation, but there were other alternatives. If she is so nice, why was she throwing things at her mother, who has an illness she can’t help she has? Her mother could have easily done the same to her, when she was young and helpless.

  • margaret sarti walsh

    i dont understand that was her mother i wish with all my heart my mother and mother in law were still alive today just to hug and love them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Carol

    Recklessly endangering another person? Really? Why is she convicted on a lesser charge? I can understand the prosecutors cutting a deal if they feel as if they don’t have a convincing case but you can’t get any more convincing than having the crime recorded!!

  • MisterPL

    Thanks to Chicago resident Mark Gruss for following up on this heinous crime to make sure justice was served. When the Scranton police did nothing, Mr. Gruss contacted the Times-Tribune and forwarded the video to the Department of Aging’s elder abuse unit. This guy’s not a peeping Tom, he’s a hero.

    • Dennis

      Are you that thick that you couldn’t separate the two issues?? I said I am glad she was caught but am wondering how he was able to get access to her webcam. Who in their right mind wouldnt be happy that the abuse was caught and hopefully this monstrous daughter is duly punished to the fullest extent of the law? But that still doesn’t answer how he could see the webcam. I have security webcams on my home and this concerns me gravely that there could be peeping Toms watching and potentially monitoring us to perpetrate a crime. Wise up MisterPL.

  • Dennis

    Glad she was caught, but am wondering how a man in Chicago hacked into her webcam. Yikes!! Are we that vulnerable to cyber peeping Toms?

    • SRV

      Ever watch “Person of Interest?” Maybe it’s something like that..but I know what you mean, I am sure such a capability won’t only be used for the good. Glad this sick piece of business was caught though, I really cannot fight the urge to slap that face.

  • ME

    Good for that man. I understand being a caregiver can be draining, but what did she expect? That someone with alzheimers would understand what the daughter wanted? You don’t treat helpless people like that or anyone else, especially if it’s your mother. I’m sure the mother was frustrated many a time when the daughter was a baby and helpless and dependent on her. How soon we forget.

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