Powell Co. deputies say abused woman ate dog food to survive

It was a tip to the Powell County Sheriff's Department that sent deputies and social workers to the home of Ruby Richardson. The 49-year-old now faces charges related to the care, or lack of, that police say she gave to a woman who couldn't take care of herself.

"A year ago when she first met Mrs. Richardson the victim weighed about 230 pounds, according to the witnesses. When we found her she weighed less than a hundred pounds," said Chief Deputy Robert Mathews.

Police say the majority of the year the victim spent with Richardson was at her home on Campton Road, but in the last few weeks they say Richardson put the woman in a home in Stanton with no heat.

"She had taken this lady there and told her to stay there and keep the door locked and not talk to anyone unless it was her," Mathews said.

He said deputies had to break the door of the home down to get to that woman.

"She had three sets of clothes on, and she was wrapped up in two or three blankets on the couch and it was extremely cold," Mathews said.

After getting her some food and making arrangements for her care police say the woman opened up about the treatment she had received.

"She said she had been in fact been beaten by Mrs. Richardson and that Mrs. Richardson wasn't feeding her properly."

Matthews says the victim even resorted to eating dog food to survive. He says the victim receives a disability check, social security, and food stamps. They believe Richardson was keeping that money for herself. She's charged with knowingly abusing or neglecting an adult, and knowingly exploiting an adult, both felonies.

"Everybody that was involved with this case was actually shocked by what they saw, her condition," Mathews said.

The victim is now in the care of social services.

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