Quinn gets 2 and a 1/2 years jail for failing to care for mother

Joanne Quinn pictured outside the Napier District Court after her 2nd appearance. Reporter: Anna Ferrick Photographer: Glenn Taylor NEWS
Joanne Quinn pictured outside the Napier District Court after her 2nd appearance. Reporter: Anna Ferrick Photographer: Glenn Taylor NEWS

Joanne Quinn showed no emotion today, when she was sentenced to two-and-a-half years jail by Judge Jonathan Down after failing to provide the necessaries of life to her mother.

Quinn, 51, was found guilty in the Napier District Court last month, after medical staff discovered Maureen Quinn a mother of eight on November 15, 2011, embedded in a couch and blanket with leg wounds.

Maureen died six weeks after being admitted to hospital on November 15, 2011, from bronchial pneumonia.

During Quinn's trial it was heard how Detective Toni Leppien told the court she interviewed the pensioner the day after she was admitted to hospital.

She said the woman described her daily meals as toast for breakfast, a boiled egg for lunch and no dinner.

"There was one time during the interview where I held her hand and she said 'your hand is so warm. I can't remember the last time someone touched me'," Mr Leppien said.

Maureen had lived in her Marewa home for 60 years and raised eight children. She was widowed in 2006 when her war veteran husband died.

Revisiting her in hospital on November 17, Mr Leppien told the court a nurse cleaned a crease in Maureen's neck that was "green and festering".

"She [Maureen] said 'I can't believe I had eight children and I've ended up in this state'."
Quinn was understood not to have visited her mother in the hospital.

Also Quinn's younger sister, Lisa Quinn, gave evidence about the relationship between her sister and their mother. Living on the Gold Coast in Australia, the 43-year-old said she visited her childhood home earlier in 2011 for about a week.

She said the family, including two other siblings, had decided their 51-year-old sister would care for their elderly mother at the home. She recalled the day before medical staff discovered her mother in November 2011.

"I spoke to mum a day or two leading up to hospital. She was crying and in pain ..." She phoned her sister shortly after and said she was concerned and asked her to call a doctor or she would.

Ms Quinn said her sister lifted the blanket up that night, while her mother slept, and discovered the open wounds and maggots. During cross-examination Ms Quinn said her mother didn't like to be moved or touched because of the pain and wanted to remain independent.

The court also heard the extensive wounds covering Maureen Quinn and the "sense of neglect" had a "stunning" impact on Hawke's Bay Hospital staff.

- HAWKES BAY TODAY

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