Posted on 9/16/2019

Defendant: Roberta I. Bower and Makiah Chaneā€™I Halsell

Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien said, “Elder abuse can often go unnoticed and unreported, however these two women videotaped their physical and emotional abuse of this senior and posted the video on social media.  Fortunately the video was seen and reported to the proper authorities.  Preying upon senior citizens in our county will not be tolerated.”  Prosecutor Ron O’Brien and Attorney General Dave Yost announce that the Franklin County Grand Jury has indicted Roberta I. Bower, age 28 and Makiah Chane’I Halsell, age 22, in connection to the June 3, 2018 abuse of a 94 year old victim.  Both women have been indicted for one count of Patient Abuse (F-4).  The indictment alleges that while presumably caring for the victim in her wheelchair, Bower sprayed the victim with hairspray about the face, getting it in her eyes and mouth from a distance of approximately a foot or less from her face.  At the same time, Halsell videotaped the incident and then posted the video on Snapchat.  Both of the aides can be heard laughing throughout the video which lasted for approximately 15 seconds.  Bower and Halsell were immediately suspended and have since been terminated from the Inn at Winchester Trail in Canal Winchester.  “This crude, cruel criminal act doesn’t belong in a place that provides care to the weak and the vulnerable,” Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said. “I’m grateful for Prosecutor Ron O’Brien’s prosecution of these two. They should never work in health care again.”  O’Brien commended the thorough investigation conducted by Attorney General Yost’s office.  “This case illustrates the importance of continued collaborative work across the county and state in order to protect the most defenseless of victims.  Our office has a partially-funded grant position for a victim advocate who works with older victims of crime and that advocate will be assisting in this case,” O’Brien further stated.  Arraignment for both women will be Monday, September 30th, 2019 in courtroom 2A at 345 S. High Street in downtown Columbus.