HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) Police charged a man accused of striking an elderly family member in the face Thursday with abusing a vulnerable adult.
According to an Horry County police report obtained by WMBF News, officers responded to the Conway Adult Day Care at 2300 Church St. near Conway after someone called about an assault. The caller told police a bus driver shared a caretaker hit his 83-year-old family member.
The report said the victim suffered from dementia and was in the care of Connie Mack White, 62, of Bucksport. When officers spoke with the victim, she told police White struck her in the mouth but couldn't remember if he hit her anywhere else.
According to the caller, White also struck the victim in the head. The bus driver told officers she saw White pulling the victim down a ramp as if he was trying to conceal her face and was immediately told by the victim that she had been struck.
The driver further stated White told the victim she "ran her mouth too much" and never denied hitting her.
When the victim was transported the hospital, a doctor told officers the victim had lacerations on the inside of her bottom lip as well as bruising to her mouth. She also reportedly suffered an injury to the right side of her head.
The victim was then released into the custody of the Department of Social Services and would then be put into another family member's care, the report said.
According to that family member, it was not the first time White abused the victim. In an exclusive interview with WMBF News the family said the victim is doing well.
Family members are outraged another relative allegedly hurt the victim and they say he deserves any punishment he gets.
"I warned him. I told him don't ever let me know that you hit her because I will take action on you," said Theresa Mack.
Mack says she hopes others will learn from what happened in her family. She applauds the quick actions of the day care workers, who reported the incident to police.
Donna Vance owns Conway Adult Day Care and she says cases like this are increasing. She says she's seen physical abuse as well as neglect or exploitation. Vance urges people to look out for the elderly and report anything they have a feeling isn't right.
"If you think something's up report. That's why we have Adult Protective Services to investigate," said Vance.
White was taken into custody by Horry County Police and charged with abusing a vulnerable adult resulting in great bodily injury. Bond was set Friday morning at $2,500, according to officials at the J. Reuben Long Detention Center.