Daughter left mum to die covered in own faeces
The daughter of a woman who died covered in faeces on a sofa in the same clothes she had worn for a decade has been jailed.
Emma-Jane Kurtz, 41, of Blackwater Way, Didcot, was found guilty of wilful neglect at Oxford Crown Court.
Cecily Kurtz’s body was found at the family home in 2014 “covered from head to toe” in excrement, police said.
Judge Peter Ross said Kurtz would serve at least half of her two-and-a-half year sentence in prison.
The rest would be “served in the community subject to licence”, he added.
Emma-Jane Kurtz was a qualified solicitor who specialised in caring for elderly clients.
She was charged in April 2017 with wilful neglect after paramedics removed the body of her mother in July 2014.
Sentencing, Judge Ross said: “Cecily Kurtz was left to rot.
“There was a closing of the door both metaphorically and literally.”
He said the pictures from the post-mortem examination of Mrs Kurtz “looked like a photo from a concentration camp”.
An investigation was launched after concerns were raised about the condition of her dilapidated property and the state the 79-year-old’s body was found in.
The court heard how when the paramedics lifted Cecily Kurtz’s body, her trousers began to disintegrate, her white underwear was a “dark mahogany brown”, and excrement and urine had “engrained” into her hands, feet and face.
Following sentencing, investigating officer Det Con Francesca Griffin said Mrs Kurtz “was found on a sofa and she had been slumped over with her chin on her knees for five days”.
“She had become incontinent and was covered from head to toe in faeces, had not changed her clothing for a decade and had urine burns.”
The officer added: “Emma-Jane Kurtz said she had gone into the room with her mother three or four times a day.
“There had been many opportunities over months and years to help her and remove her from that situation.”
Judge Ross said he recognised Kurtz had mild autism and was undergoing therapy.
He said he believed she was capable of showing empathy, but that she had stopped caring for her mother, who had depression and obsessive compulsive disorder.
Kirsty Allman, senior crown prosecutor for Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service, described Mrs Kurtz as “emaciated” at just 39kg.
She said she had “suffered unimaginably” in “horrifically squalid conditions”.
She added: “It is rare to come across a case that involves such sheer and blatant neglect against a vulnerable, elderly woman, by someone who was supposed to love and care for her.
“This has been one of the most shocking and sickening cases of neglect I have come across.”
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