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Two indicted in personal care home death

By Kathy Jefcoats

kjefcoats@henryherald.com

JONESBORO — A Clayton County grand jury has indicted two people in the apparent beating death last year of a disabled adult in their care.

Esther Orerome Edukuye, 44, of Langshire Drive in McDonough and Jerry Lamar Richardson, 27, were indicted Dec. 19. Edukuye has been arrested on the indictment and is being held without bond in the Clayton County Jail.

A fugitive warrant has been issued for Richardson. Clayton sheriff's Capt. Brian Crisp said an out of state search is being done to find him.

Edukuye was indicted on felony murder, neglect of a disabled person and failure to report a need for protective services in the death of Robert Rosenthal, 58. She is due in Clayton County Superior Court for arraignment Jan. 9.

Richardson was indicted for felony murder and abuse of a disabled adult.

The indictment alleges the pair failed to provide adequate supervision and care "such that progressive inanition and cerebral dysfunction set in due to pneumonia and cerebral cortical atrophy complicated by multiple cutaneous blunt force injury."

In laymen's terms, prosecutors allege Rosenthal was physically exhausted due to lack of food and water, confused, suffered from brain atrophy and injuries caused by blunt force trauma.

Records show Edukuye, a registered nurse, owned and operated Guiding Hands, an assisted-living facility on Valley Stream Drive in Jonesboro. Richardson was a day laborer at the facility and holds no certification as a health care provider, according to the Georgia Secretary of State's Office.

Edukuye holds a valid license as a registered nurse, according to the same records.