Deceased man's bedsores exposed bone

Posted at 6:01 PM, Apr 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-20 00:29:18-04

A 28-year-old New Port Richey man is accused of abusing his now deceased father after deputies found bedsores so severe on the 64-year-old's body that bones was exposed, an arrest affidavit states.

James Burke, of 4106 Vista Verde Drive, Apt #6, is now facing adult aggravated abuse and evidence tampering charges.

Pasco County deputies say they were called out to the apartment Burke shared with his father, Richard, on Saturday.

Burke had called to report his father's passing.

According to deputies, Richard suffered from Alzheimer's and had been bedridden for the past several months.

Deputies found Richard's body on the floor of a bedroom.  He had several bedsores on his legs, buttocks and both hips that exposed bones, deputies noted.

When questioned by detectives, Burke reportedly admitted he knew about his father's bedsores but failed to seek medical attention, adding he had not taken his father to see a doctor in four years.

According to deputies, Burke also confessed he had re-dressed his father and removed his mattress from the apartment prior to calling 911 because he feared he would get in trouble.

He allegedly threw those items in a dumpster.

Richard is believed to have died from natural causes, deputies say.

Neighbors told ABC Action News they would often see Richard when they walked by the apartment because there was an opening in the blinds.  They explained he was often in bed.

Just last week, Richard Conner, who lives next door, says the opening in the window was covered by a piece of black cardboard.

He was not aware of the conditions in the apartment and noted he saw Burke clean just one time.

"One time he cleaned the house out and it looked like you could see on the bed there were a bunch of stains," explained Conner.  "I didn't stop to look but there were big stains on the bed and I don't know what they were.

Burke is out on bond.