Woman charged in care home abuse accused of operating unlicensed

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POWDER SPRINGS, Ga. - Channel 2 Action News has learned a care home accused of abusing a mentally challenged patient did not have a license and the owner was recently forced to close another home. Neighbors also talked about their encounters with patients roaming the streets.

Channel 2's Ross Cavitt broke the story about allegations against Top of the Line residential care on Monday afternoon.

Many residents said they heard of Edith Page, the owner, who the city of Powder Springs took to court for the care home. On Tuesday, Cavitt spoke to neighbor Susan Mares, who said a mentally challenged woman suddenly appeared inside her Powder Springs home one night last year.

"She said 'no' and she broke away from me and went out to my kitchen and I was frightened. I have a child in the house and my family. I didn't know if she was capable of harming myself and my family," Mares said.

Mares and other neighbors say the mentally challenged residents often wandered the streets, and for months stayed in a home on Atlanta Street, until the city of Powder Springs took Page to court for illegally running a care home.

Court documents show they settled with an agreement that Page quit using the Atlanta Street home, and others in another neighborhood as either a care home or boarding house.

Page has now been accused, along with husband Osvaldo Hernandez and colleagues Stephan Caldwell and John Mitchell, of assaulting a mentally challenged person under their care and tying him to a bed overnight.

The incident allegedly started at a home on Meadows Road, and ended at a Brownsville Road home, even though state officials confirmed that Page did not have a license for a care home at either location.

Even in recent months, Powder Springs neighbors say they still see mentally disabled people sometimes walking the streets and it troubles them.

"They're somebody's daughter. They're somebody's family member. They're somebody's son, and they need to be taken care of. They don't need to be left on their own," Mares said.

The accused face charges including false imprisonment. Cavitt reached out to the attorney but so far, he hasn't gotten a call back.