NORWICH – An 85-year-old nursing home resident suffering from mental illness has been locked up at the county jail since Oct. 3, and while the Sheriff says it’s not his responsibility to get the inmate the treatment he needs, he’s doing the best he can.
Leonard Bentley was arrested Oct. 3 and has been held into the Chenango County Correctional Facility on $1,000 bail for the charge of public lewdness. Bentley has served a total of 19 days in incarceration; the maximum sentence possible on the B class misdemeanor is 90 days.
Chase Memorial Nursing Home staff were in contact with the Sheriff’s Office for two months prior to them filing the complaint that resulted in the arrest.
“He was apparently too much for them,” said Chenango County Sheriff Thomas J. Loughren.
The Sheriff admitted that there was debate on the competency level of the defendant at the time of his arrest, but deputies were compelled to act at the request of the nursing home.
Bentley’s Public Defender Kayphet Mavady said he had been diagnosed with frontal lobe dementia by the psychiatric unit at Bassett Healthcare in Oneonta over 18 months ago.