Woman jailed for manslaughter after 'gross neglect' of her 91-year-old grandmother

Maude White's body was found in the caravan she owned in Cockermouth, Cumbria

Kim Pilling
Tuesday 14 November 2017 17:56
Jacqueline Fairclough denied knowing that her grandmother was in serious need of medical attention and claimed sores must have appeared on the day of her death
Jacqueline Fairclough denied knowing that her grandmother was in serious need of medical attention and claimed sores must have appeared on the day of her death

A woman has been jailed for three years for the manslaughter of her 91-year-old grandmother, who had been in need of “urgent medical attention”.

The body of Maude White was found in the caravan she owned in Cockermouth, Cumbria, on May 27, and a post-mortem examination found she died as a result of neglect and multiple sores.

On Tuesday Jacqueline Fairclough, 43, was sentenced at Carlisle Crown Court after she admitted manslaughter by gross negligence, said Cumbria Police.

Fairclough, formerly of Pennine Way, Eccleston, Preston, received a carer's allowance for Ms White and each year they would visit Wyndham Caravan Park in Cockermouth for several months.

When interviewed by police, Fairclough denied knowing that her grandmother was in serious need of medical attention, and said that the sores must have appeared on the day of her death.

She also claimed that Mrs White had a “clean and healthy lifestyle” and that she washed, fed and changed her on a daily basis.

Medical experts said that the sores would have appeared over a considerable amount of time, police said.

Detective Constable Ruth Pickering said: “This is a tragic case in which Maude White suffered significant injuries as a result of neglect and poor personal care, and which ultimately led to her death.

“During the police investigation, Fairclough denied any wrongdoing and claimed to have cared for her grandmother in the best way possible.

“It was clear that Mrs White was in need of urgent medical attention which she did not receive.

“I am happy now that Fairclough has admitted responsibility for the lack of care she provided and my thoughts go out to Maude White's family who have had to deal with the loss of their loved one in such terrible circumstances.”

The defendant's father, Peter Fairclough, 72, was also charged with manslaughter, but the Crown Prosecution Service offered no evidence against him following a review, and a verdict of not guilty was recorded.

Susan Taylor, senior crown prosecutor of CPS North West Complex Casework Unit, said: “Jacqueline Fairclough pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of her grandmother Maude White, admitting that she owed Maude White a duty of care and that she breached that duty of care through neglect of her care and by not seeking urgent medical attention for the severe pressure sores that she was suffering.

“This breach of the duty of care she owed Maude White led to her death.”

Press Association