A Florida man faces criminal charges for allegedly leaving his elderly and frail father to sit in human waste so long his skin started rotting, WESH-TV reports.
Police in Apopka, Florida, were called to the man’s home Thursday after the Fire Department raised concerns that he was being neglected.
The elderly man had called authorities telling them he was ill, but when medical crews got to the home, he claimed he was doing better and that they could leave.
Officials from the Fire Department then searched for other ways to get into the home and met the man’s son, Scott Winkler, at the back of the house.
Crews eventually got inside the residence and found the man, Jerry Winkler, in a chair and covered in urine and feces.
He appeared to be in pain, smelled of rotting feces and flesh and exhibited signs of malnourishment.
Medics loaded the father in an ambulance, brought him to a hospital and then called police.
Investigators say inside the home they found a chair sinking in its center with a brown-colored towel that looked as though someone had sat on it for a long time.
The towel was soaked with feces and urine that had spilled out onto the floor.
Police also found a burger that had fallen into the excrement, as well as half-eaten food throughout the home, dirty dishes, an inoperable stove and an empty refrigerator that had dead bugs in the bottom of it, WTVJ-TV reports.
Scott Winkler told police that he had been caring for his father after the man was hospitalized for a fall in October.
Officers said they believed the man had not moved from the chair for more than two weeks.
Scott Winkler claimed his dad would refuse to eat and wouldn’t tell him when his diaper had to be changed. Winkler also alleged that he couldn’t help bathe his dad because the man would be verbally abusive.
Winkler’s mother reportedly moved out of the home six months ago.
According to police, Winkler was confrontational with authorities and he said officers should charge his mother because she should be responsible for caring for her husband, the Orlando Sentinel reports.
“Scott advised he isn’t married to Jerry so he shouldn’t have to take care of him,” a detective wrote in a police report. “During my contact with Scott, he did not appear to care about his father’s condition.”
Officers subsequently arrested Winkler, who now faces charges of neglect of an elderly or disabled adult with great harm.
He was taken to jail on a $7,500 bond.
Feature image: Scott Winkler/Orange County Jail