2 caregivers arrested, charged with murder - FOX 10 News | fox10phoenix.com

2 caregivers arrested, charged with murder

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Carlena Pinkerton and Joshua Pinkerton Carlena Pinkerton and Joshua Pinkerton

Police say a man died in what appears to be a horrifying case of abuse at the hands of his sister and her husband.

27-year-old Carlena Pinkerton and 31-year-old Joshua Pinkerton were charged with vulnerable adult abuse and second-degree murder.

Police say on June 1, the pair dropped off 22-year-old James Moore, who was mentally disabled, at the Phoenix Indian Hospital for treatment in an unresponsive state.

When hospital staffers took Moore inside, the Pinkertons, who were his legal caregivers, left.  

Moore was examined and found to have two black eyes, head injuries, bruising all over his body, along with open wounds on his legs, arms, hips, back and torso.  Several bone fractures and dislocations to his nose, hip, femur and right arm were diagnosed.

The victim also had a collapsed lung, acute renal failure due to dehydration, malnutrition and sepsis because the wounds were infected with a flesh eating bacteria.  Police say Moore had a 1" object embedded in his throat which was swollen and infected as well.

Due to the severity of his injuries, Moore was transported to Banner Good Samaritan hospital where staffers tried to save his life.

When police interviewed the Pinkertons at their home, they denied knowing about the injuries, except for a small scrape on Moore's nose.  They claimed they didn't know how the injuries occurred.

The Pinkertons were arrested on June 4 after police served a search warrant on their home near 56th Avenue and Earll. Evidence indicated that at some point, Moore was locked in a room for periods of time.

Neighbors had heard screams from the house, but had no way of knowing what was going on inside.  They were stunned to learn of the torture going on next door.

"I am sorry it makes me tear up when I think about it," said Norma Veach.  "You just do not think things will happen to you next door like that.  I think it is horrible."

Authorities say Moore was held as a prisoner in a tiny space where the water heater was located in the house -- a space for him measuring 2 feet by 4 feet.  It was locked from the outside so he could not get out.

Police say the Maricopa County Medical Examiner's office found signs of ongoing torture.  When the 6 foot tall Moore died, he weighed 100 pounds.  The medical examiner determined that this was abuse, neglect and a homicide.

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