LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — A Las Vegas woman has been arrested for the murder of her mother.
Police say that 49-year-old Sandy Howe was the primary caregiver for her mother when died at the age of 73 in 2018. Howe also had her mother's power of attorney for medical and financial decisions.
Howe's mother was admitted to Desert Springs Hospital on April 2, 2018, after police officers initiated a Legal 2000 during a welfare check. According to hospital records, she was being treated for suspected neglect-related injuries. She was transferred to a local hospice at some point and died at the hospice on April 16, 2018.
The woman's autopsy reported stated: "Due to the fact that (named redacted) was bedridden and debilitated by Alzheimer dementia, and therefore dependent on others for all of her care, as well as the fact that daughter had been
instructed to take her for medical care and had failed to do so, her death is attributed to complications of neglect of medical care. As a result, the manner of death is a homicide."
It appears that the last time the woman saw a doctor before her death was in May 2015 when she became unconscious and would not wake up. Before that, she had not been seen since 2011 when she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's.
Howe was instructed by hospital staff in 2015 that her mother should be in a skilled nursing or group home. They also warned her that he mother was at risk of bedsores.
Howe ignored the advice of the medical staff and kept her mother at home. Instead, she made a deal with another woman to care for her in exchange for free rent.
The person told police that she did the best that she could but she took her orders from Howe. She also told police that she told Howe multiple times that her mother needed to be treated because of severe bedsores. Howe reportedly refused and told the woman to treat the bedsores with an over-the-counter cream.
The woman says that it was obvious that the mother was in severe pain and she finally told Howe that she couldn't continue caring for Howe's mother because of her worsening condition.
The woman says that she complained to several people about the woman's condition. Police interviewed multiple witnesses who were friends with Howe, who also said they told her to take her mother to the hospital. Friends also donated food and toiletry items to Howe's mother because Howe refused to provide for her mother.
It was also discovered that would take her mother's money out of her bank account each month, usually through an ATM at a nearby Dotty's.
During the last few year's of her mother's life, it appears that Howe used the $2,900 her mother received each month to gamble, buy things at Walmart and pet supply stores, pay bills, eat out and gamble.
Howe, who was arrested July 13, is also being charged with abuse and neglect. She was booked into the Clark County Detention Center.