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Winterbourne View Victim Loved Pain, Court Hears

October 23, 2012

A care worker at a private hospital exposed on television abusing patients was filmed telling a colleague that one of their victims “loved pain”.

Bristol Crown Court was shown footage of Alison Dove, 25, of Kingswood, hitting the same patient.

Dove is one of 11 ex care workers of Winterbourne View, near Bristol, being sentenced for neglect or abuse.

The care home, now under new management, looks after people with severe learning difficulties.

The court heard that five residents – Simone Blake, Simon Tovey, Louise Bissett, Louisa Deville and Lorraine Guildford – were abused by the defendants.

‘Punch your face’

Dove, referring to Miss Blake, was filmed by a BBC Panorama reporter as saying: “She loves pain, doesn’t she? She thinks it’s funny.”

She then told Miss Blake: “Simone, come here and I’ll punch your face.”

The court then saw footage of Dove run up to Miss Blake, who was sitting on the floor with her back to her, and striking her hard on the back with the flat palm of her hand. Miss Blake squealed in pain twice.

In another scene from the footage recorded by journalist Joseph Casey, Dove was seen filling jugs of water from a sink and pouring water over Miss Blake.

Water splashed into her face and she cried out: “I’m cold mum.”

Dove and colleague Graham Doyle were seen on the footage encouraging Miss Blake to go outside wet. Dove also squirted shower gel towards Miss Blake’s face.

The care worker asked her: “Do you want another shower?”

The footage then captured Miss Deville tell Miss Blake: “Simmie, don’t mess with Ali or she will put you in the shower again. Yes, she will put you in the shower.”

In another incident, with Miss Guildford, Dove straddled her as she was lying on the floor and said: “Listen, you don’t get to chuck stuff at me, you know that.

“I don’t let you get away with it. I’m going to keep it, all right, until you say sorry, all right, because we’ve done nothing to you except tell you to get dressed, so you can have your dinner.”

After Miss Guildford swore at her, Dove responded with: “Go on, spit on my staff. I dare you. There you go, spit on your own bedding, you won’t do that will you?”

‘Profits before care’

During five weeks spent filming undercover, a Panorama reporter captured footage of some of the hospital’s most vulnerable patients being repeatedly pinned down, slapped, dragged into showers while fully clothed, taunted and teased.

Judge Neil Ford QC, the Recorder of Bristol, said the sentencing hearing could last up to five days.

A serious case review published in August condemned the hospital’s owner Castlebeck for putting profits before care.

Castlebeck said the criticisms in the report were being “actively addressed”.

The full list of defendants is:

Michael Ezenagu, 29, from Shepherds Bush, west London; Alison Dove, 23, of Kingswood; Graham Doyle, 25, of Patchway; Jason Gardiner, 44, of Hartcliffe; Daniel Brake, 27, of Downend; Holly Laura Draper, 23, of Mangotsfield; Charlotte Justine Cotterell, 21, from Yate and Neil Ferguson, 27, of Emerson Green, Wayne Rogers, 31, of Kingswood, who all admit ill-treating patients in their care.

Sooaklingum Appoo, 58, of Downend, and Kelvin Fore, 33, from Middlesbrough, pleaded guilty to wilfully neglecting patients in their care.

Dove and Rogers have requested to remain in custody but the remaining nine defendants were released on bail by Judge Neil Ford QC, the Recorder of Bristol.

The sentencing hearing continues.

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