Two quizzed in care homes probe

TWO people were last night being questioned by detectives about suspected neglect at a series of care homes in an Essex town.

James Hore

TWO people were last night being questioned by detectives about suspected neglect at a series of care homes in an Essex town.

The arrests followed a major police operation yesterday morning with officers executing search warrants at nine properties in two roads in Colchester.

The operation targeted the privately run homes in Cowdray Avenue and Harwich Road which care for people who have mental health issues.


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Just after 8am officers executed the warrants and arrested a 71-year-old man and a 56-year-old woman, both from Colchester.

The pair were last night still being questioned by police on suspicion of causing neglect and ill treatment under the Mental Capacity Act.

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Throughout the morning at the properties in Cowdray Avenue officers wearing scientific suits removed a number of bags of evidence and carried out detailed forensic examinations.

The arrests came after concerns were raised about the welfare of the residents.

The EADT understands that 10 residents had already been relocated from the homes last year after concerns were raised about the standards of care.

Although the properties are privately run, Essex County Council has a duty of care to the adults and also provides funding packages for some of those in the homes.

The operation was carried out by officers following discussions with Essex Social Services.

An Essex Police spokesman said: “Two people have been arrested following a police operation in Colchester.

“Search warrants were executed at nine properties on Cowdray Avenue and Harwich Road shortly after 8am.

“Detectives are liaising with social services following concerns about the welfare of residents at the specific care homes for people with mental health issues.”

And a spokeswoman from Essex County Council said: “Essex County Council takes these kinds of allegation very seriously but is unable to comment about this case as it is now the subject of a police inquiry.

“The welfare of service users is our top priority and we are offering Essex Police every assistance during their investigation.”

james.hore@eadt.co.uk

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