Brookfield Man Charged with Neglecting Ailing Wife

Joseph Duffy is charged with felony neglect for allegedly failing to provide medical care for his elderly wife, bedridden with dementia

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    Joseph Duffy is charged with felony neglect for failing to provide medical care for his elderly wife, bedridden with dementia

    A Brookfield man is being held on $75,000 bond after he was charged Thursday with felony abuse and neglect for failing to provide proper medical care to his bedridden wife, prosecutors said.

    Joseph Duffy, 50, of the 8800 block of West 45th Place, is charged with two counts of felony criminal abuse or neglect of an elderly person or person with a disability after he allegedly left his wife, suffering from long-term dementia, “on a cot in her own filth as her condition slowly deteriorated over the course of several years.”

    Joseph Duffy is also accused of spending his wife’s disability and pension checks, according to police.

    "As she was being removed [from their home], he specifically mentioned that he's worried, now, that he's going to lose the checks, that he's going to lose the pension and disability checks, so the only indication that we got throughout this was that he was concerned about losing money," Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart said Thursday.

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    Mary Jane Duffy suffered from hydrocephalus which led to the onset of dementia in 2005, leaving her bedridden and requiring daily medical assistance over the last year, prosecutors said.

    Though a nurse helped care for the victim, Joseph Duffy was responsible for purchasing her food and caring for her when the nurse was away, prosecutors said. Caretakers reported that conditions repeatedly failed to improve, with Joseph Duffy allegedly refusing to get his wife a pillow or bandages for her bed sores.

    In August 2011, Joseph Duffy agreed to call hospice care, which described the victim’s condition as “severely emaciated,” and reported the case, according to the Cook County state's attorney. Brookfield Police convinced Joseph Duffy to send his wife to the hospital, where medics found she had 13 bed sores and was malnourished, “almost skeleton-like.”

    Mary Jane Duffy was placed in in-patient hospice and died nine days later.

    Joseph Duffy is scheduled to appear back in Cook County Court July 19.