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Former assisted-living worker accused of battery

By Jason A. Smisth

A former employee of a local assisted-living facility was behind bars in Henry County, after being suspected of injuring an elderly woman while working.

Denise Annmarie Phillips, 36, of Jonesboro, is charged with battery.

Henry County Police reportedly began investigating Phillips in December, following an alleged incident at Benton House at 201 Evergreen Terrace in Stockbridge.

Police Capt. Jason Bolton said the victim in the case is an 80-year-old, female resident at the location.

"Phillips was an employee of Benton House during the time of the incident," said Bolton. "It was reported on Dec. 8, 2008 [that] Phillips stood on the foot of the 80-year-old victim, on an earlier date, while getting her dressed because the victim was moving around too much. [Phillips'] actions resulted in a bruise on the victim's foot."

Police obtained a warrant for Phillips' arrest shortly after the incident. According to the Henry County Sheriff's Office, the suspect was apprehended Wednesday as she was getting off a plane in Miami, Fla.

Phillips was brought back to Henry County Thursday, and appeared in Magistrate Court.

She waived her right to a preliminary hearing in the case, and her bond was set at $5,000. She is being represented by the Public Defender's Office.

Peter Young, administrative assistant at Benton House, did not confirm Phillips' former employment at the facility and did not comment on the battery case.