“Huge shock”: the patient with dementia leaves the nursing home and ends up in prison

TAMPA, Florida (WFLA) – The family of a 74-year-old dementia patient was shocked to find she ended up in prison after leaving her Florida nursing home last week.

The police took Gwen Donahue on an exceptional warrant nearly ten years ago.

“When he wakes up in the morning, he doesn’t know where he is,” said his daughter Meghan Donahue. “She probably thinks she did something wrong and we abandoned her.”

Donahue said her mother is in poor physical and mental health and poses no risk to the public.

Donahue explained that her mother moved away from her nursing home in Dade City on Wednesday. Apparently she managed to get three miles away before the Dade City officers found her.

They also found a 2011 warrant for her arrest when they taught her name and later enrolled her in the Pasco County Jail.

Meghan Donahue called the mandate, which she was unaware of, a “huge shock”.

“My mother is unprecedented. It’s just this little old Catholic lady, ”he said. “My mother shouldn’t be spending another minute there.”

Donahue said the warrant comes from an old DUI. Her mother paid fines and completed community service, but apparently missed a two-hour online course.

“Someone should be careful of people who get trapped in the web and shouldn’t be there,” he said.

Donahue said after nearly a week of calling authorities in Pasco and Sumter Counties, a Sumter County judge signed a release order on Monday afternoon. His mother was due to be released on Tuesday evening.


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