Tampa authorities say Mary Winston was found with bed sores so bad her rib cage was exposed

TAMPA - WARNING:  Article contains graphic details of abuse

Hillsborough County Sheriff's deputies say a woman's husband, son and daughters neglected her so badly over the course of three years she died as a result.

Mary Winston was alive when maggots began eating her body and she had bed sores so large her rib cage was exposed, detectives say.

The 65-year-old suffered from rheumatoid arthritis and depended on family members for care.

According to deputies, over a three year span Winston developed bed sores which were not properly treated and became so advanced, maggots became active on and insider her body.

Additionally, one bed sore was so advanced, it developed into a permanent open wound, which fully exposed the back of Winston's rib cage, thus leaving rib bones exposed to the open air, deputies say.

This occurred at 11029 Airview Drive in Tampa.  Winston's two daughters apparently lived with her.

Deputies say bandages were applied to Winston but were not put on properly.  In the end, those bandages became fused to the wounds.

Upon Winston's death, her bed sheets were found stuck to her back, deputies say.

Deputies say the woman also smelled of urine and feces.

Winston, according to a press release, was immobile for so long the skin on her legs became fused together.

Winston died on October 25, 2012. Deputies say her son saw her last on October 21.

On October 26, the medical examiner's office conducted an autopsy and ruled the manner of death as homicide.

Her husband, Osmond Montgomery Winston and her two daughters, Belinda J. Winston and Hyacinth Winston, were arrested for aggravated manslaughter (neglect of the disabled).  

A warrant has been issued for Winston's son, 45-year-old Osmond Ignatius Winston.  His address is 12123 Tree Haven Avenue in Gibsonton.  Detectives believe he may be out of state because he is employed as a trucker.
"I thought everything was fine," said neighbor Judy Boatwright.   "I don't think anybody on this block would have ever had any idea, any inkling anything was going on like that."
Boatwright told ABC Action News she spoke on occasion with Winston's daughter who often talked of taking care of her mother.
Boatwright recalled seeing the trash go out every Thursday along which included adult diapers for Winston.
She said had she have known what was going on across the street she would have intervened.
According to Boatwright, Winston's family was paying out of pocket for her medical care.  Apparently, Winston came to the U.S. but never became a citizen and therefore was not eligible for Medicare.
Next door neighbor Nancy Crumbley recalls the day Winston died.  She went to the house when she saw a lot of people outside and questioned if everything was alright.
"The son told me his mother died," said Crumbley.
A family member, who identified himself as Winston's grandson, answered the door.  He declined to comment on his grandmother's death.
Print this article Back to Top