Padiham care worker denies ill-treating dementia residents at Haslingden home

First published in News Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by , Crime reporter

A SENIOR care worker has denied allegations he ill-treated two elderly dementia residents.

Mark Taylor, 57, told a jury the claims that had been made against him by staff at Haslingden Lodge were ‘false’ and ‘very hurtful’.

The defendant, of Stockbridge Road, Padiham, had been accused of six counts, but the judge at Burnley Crown Court found he had no case to answer in three of them.

He is still standing trial for behaving in an ‘inappropriate’ and ‘cruel’ manner towards Ann Coombe and Mary Burke, known as Olive.

The court was told that complaints had been made against Taylor by Mary Moore and Dionne Ashworth, who worked with the defendant at the Lancaster Avenue home.

It was alleged that he slapped Mrs Burke on the bottom and shouted at her while helping her to go to the toilet.

Taylor said: “It did not happen. It did not happen at all.

“I did take her to the toilet, but I did not slap her on the bottom.

“It is undignified. You do not do things like that.”

The defendant is also accused of holding Mrs Coombe in a ‘bear hug’, marching her down a corridor and pushing her into her bedroom when she behaved in a difficult way on two occasions.

Taylor told the jury: “I do not shove people.

“It is false and they are very hurtful allegations.

“I have a duty of care and I respect my position and it hurts.”

Judge Robert Altham heard that Taylor had 12 years’ experience as a carer and had also worked in management at another home.

The defendant was suspended from Haslingden Lodge when the allegations were made.

He told the court that the complaints had come after he had been offered a job as deputy manager.

Taylor said Mrs Moore had asked him why he had been in manager Jane Sefton’s office, but he refused to answer.

He claimed that when she continued to push him for an answer, he said he and the manager had been discussing her work attitude, which caused Mrs Moore offence.

The allegations were made soon after the argument.

Taylor said: “I have never heard any complaint about my work.

“I did not even know why I had been suspended.

“My manager never spoke to me, only to offer me the deputy manager’s post.”

The case continues.

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