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Tampa Family Faces Aggravated Manslaughter Charges in Death of Disabled Woman

Mary Winston’s family – her husband and three adult children – have been charged with aggravated manslaughter in her October 2012 death. Mary Winston had such severe rheumatoid arthritis that she couldn’t move and depended on her family for care for three years.

Winston’s husband, Osmond Winston, and their children Belinda, Hyacinth and Osmond Ignatius Winston have all been charged with aggravated manslaughter of an elderly or disabled person, a first-degree felony.

According to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, Winston’s family let her suffer from infected bedsores that were so extensive they exposed her rib cage and fused her legs together. When detectives saw her on Oct. 25, just hours after she died, the bedsores were reportedly filled with maggots.

Deputies reported that a sore on her back – about the size of a hand – exposed a rib, which was brown and dry from exposure. The sores on her leg were so raw that when new scar tissue grew, it fused her immobile limbs together. Bandages were reportedly stuck in her wounds and a blanket was adhered to her back.

Autopsy determined that she died from infection.

According to an arrest affidavit, Osmond Winston admitted his wife should have been getting professional medical care. Mrs. Winston’s family members told deputies that she was a nurse, and she had been giving them instructions on how to care for her, according to the Sheriff’s Office. However, reports indicate that they realized their care was not sufficient but by then were too scared to contact authorities.

The three arrested were booked into the Hillsborough County Jail and held without bail. They do not appear to have any previous arrests in Florida.

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