Calgary

Neglect charges laid after dependent adult son taken to hospital weighing only 43 pounds

Two Calgary parents have been charged after a hospital worker reported severe neglect of their adult son, who is dependent on their care.

Hospital worker notified Calgary police

'The victim suffered from a medical condition and was completely dependent on his parents for all his basic needs,' said Staff Sgt.Vincent Hancott of the Calgary Police Service. (David Bell/CBC)

Two Calgary parents have been charged after a hospital worker reported severe neglect of their adult son, who was dependent on their care.

Police say the parents found their son unresponsive in his bedroom on Oct. 24 in their Falconridge home in the city's northeast.

The 27-year-old man was taken to hospital, where he was admitted in acute medical distress. 

Police say the man weighed only 43 pounds.

"The victim suffered from a medical condition and was completely dependent on his parents for all his basic needs," Staff Sgt. Vincent Hancott said Friday in a release.

"It is believed his parents failed to provide him necessary care, progressing to the point where his life was in danger."

Hancott says a front-line health-care worker brought the case to police attention.

"This is a very serious situation and we commend this individual for recognizing the signs of neglect and contacting police," said Hancott. 

Police say the victim is recovering in a long-term care facility.

On Wednesday, Jonathon Grunewald, 52, and Malinda Phillips, 47, were charged with one count each of failing to provide necessaries of life as well as negligence causing bodily harm.

They are scheduled to appear in court on Feb. 4.

Hancott says police recognize many are struggling in the city during the pandemic but caregivers remain obligated to ensure proper care to those dependent on them. 

"If you're struggling, please reach out and access available resources," he said.

Anyone with information that may aid the investigation is asked to contact the Calgary Police Service's non-emergency number at 403-266-1234 or submit a tip anonymously to Crime Stoppers

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