When 90-year-old Della Cotton was found dead at her South Side home in December, she had maggots in her hair, bed sores all over her body and burns from lying for weeks in her own urine.
Cotton's granddaughter, Nicole Falls, 40, was charged with
homicide by elderly neglect or abuse.
Falls, a cook for the Chicago Public
Schools, turned herself in to police on Tuesday.
Prosecutors said Falls was her grandmother's primary caretaker since
Cotton broke her leg in a fall four years ago, rendering her homebound. Falls
obtained power of attorney over her grandmother's affairs and cashed Cotton's
monthly disability checks.
Falls admitted to police
that Cotton's health had deteriorated over the past year and that during the
last few months of her life there were numerous sores all over her body.
Falls stated the victim
cried out in pain nearly every night, and despite this, she never sought medical
care for her and would give her Tylenol 'from time to time.
During the last week of her life, Cotton stopped eating and became less
responsive, but Falls still did not call for medical attention.
On Dec. 20, Falls came home from work and was told by one of her
children that Cotton was not moving. Realizing her grandmother was
dead, Falls called a funeral home, but the workers who came out to Falls’ home
in the 400 block of West Marquette Road refused to accept the body because of
its condition and 911 was called