A group home worker denies putting lemon juice and hand sanitizer into the eye of a severely disabled resident. The woman testified Thursday during her trial, which is being heard in court in Battleford, Sask.
Ashley Johnson is accused of assaulting Sylene Piatt, who has cerebral palsy and can't feed herself or speak. Johnson is also charged with administering a noxious substance.
On Wednesday, another group home worker, Tracy Erhardt, testified she saw Johnson squeeze lemon juice into one of Piatt's eyes.
According to Erhard, Johnson said, "I just want to see if it burns".
Erhardt told court Johnson claimed to have also rubbed hand sanitizer in Piatt's eyes.
She also said she saw Johnson force Piatt to chew whole peppercorns.
It came out during testimony that Erhardt had waited more than 24 hours to report the incidents.
During cross-examination, the defence asked Erhardt was if she knew the lemon juice was part of a special diet and that Johnson sometimes put hand sanitizer on Piatt's hands.
Erhardt was also asked about another co-worker she levelled accusations against — accusations the group home management concluded were groundless.
Johnson denies claims
Johnson was the only defence witness called.
She was asked about allegedly saying to Piatt that it was "time to burn your mouth."
Johnson testified Piatt would often want to eat as soon as food was ready, and she would say the resident would have to wait as the food was still very hot.
She also responded to questions about the peppercorns, denying the allegations raised about them.
Under cross examination, when asked why she was trying to wipe hand sanitizer out of Sylene's eyes while still wearing gloves she had on while applying sanitizer to Sylene's hand, Johnson replied "I panicked".
Final arguments in the case were presented to the judge on Thursday.
A decision was expected May 8.