A Vestaburg woman faces numerous charges including neglect and false imprisonment after being accused of keeping her care-dependent sister in a wooden cage containing only a dirty mattress and providing her with little-to-no medical care.
The state attorney general’s office has charged Leona Biser, 51, with neglect of a care-dependent person, abuse of a care-dependent person, recklessly endangering another person, unlawful restraint, and false imprisonment after agents discovered that Biser had kept her sister, Loretta Lancaster, 53, in the man-made cell in the home’s living room.
“This defendant professed to be caring for her sister when, in fact, the home was in deplorable condition, had no running water, and the victim was not getting her prescribed medicines,” Attorney General Josh Shapiro said in a news release Wednesday. “We fight to protect those who cannot protect themselves. And our agents have made sure the victim has received needed care and will no longer have to suffer daily living in a cage.”
After discovering Lancaster, agents had her transported to Monongahela Valley Hospital for treatment of a urinary tract infection and Rhabdomyolysis, which is a breakdown of muscle that can be caused by infection, according to Shapiro.
Lancaster’s condition improved during her hospital stay. She has regained some mobility, and is working with a speech therapist, according to the attorney general’s office.
Senior Deputy Attorney General Patrick Schulte of the Office of Attorney General’s Criminal Prosecution Section and Deputy Attorney General Aaron McKendry of the Office’s Medicaid Fraud Control Section are prosecuting the case.