A woman has been charged with elderly abuse and neglect after her mother-in-law was discovered barricaded in the basement of the family home. Piedad Linden was arrested after police found her mother-in-law trapped in the basement, the door wedged shut with a shovel.Police had gone to the home in New Jersey after complaints from a neighbor that the basement was overrun with dozens of cats. Mrs Linden and her husband Guy claimed that the incident was a misunderstanding.
Piedad Linden was arrested after she returned home from church last Thursday, saying that she had only left the elderly woman for two hours.
The 89-year-old appeared disorientated when questioned by police, according to Captain Michael Zitt.
Officials deemed the 89-year-old’s basement living quarters as ‘uninhabitable’.
Piedad Linden said: ‘I tried to make her life as pleasant as possible, I did what I could, and this comes to me as a surprise.’
Delphine backed up her daughter-in-law’s claims, saying that she was well care for and not a prisoner in the home.
Guy Linden said the lock was broken on the door which is why it was jammed shut.
He said his mother was taking medication which may have caused her confused state when confronted by the strange policemen.
Social services were now looking into the case.