(Aurora, Ind.) – A retired Dearborn County employee spent the last three weeks of her life stuck in a chair, resulting in several charges against the woman’s sister.
Priscilla “Pody” Frieberger died October 2, 2011. She retired the previous December after working 40 years in the Dearborn County Auditor’s office.
It was a death that was avoidable, prosecutors say.
Pody’s caretaker and sister, Vickie Holdcraft, was indicted Friday by a Dearborn County grand jury on six charges: Neglect of a Dependant Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury (Class B felony), Neglect of a Dependant (Class B felony), Neglect of a Dependant (Class C felony), Reckless Homicide (Class C felony), and two counts of Perjury (Class D felony).
That October day, police were dispatched to the home the sisters shared at 661 Wilson Creek Road.
“After arriving at the scene there was a huge lot of clutter throughout the house stacked up to the ceiling. I can only describe it as something out of the show ‘Hoarders,’” said Dearborn County Prosecutor Aaron Negangard.
Officers and EMTs said the home smelled of animal waste and what could only be described as decomposing flesh, Negangard said. But that wasn’t the worst discovery.
“Upon speaking to Pody it was determined she had been in the chair for a minimum of three weeks,” the prosecutor said. “She was in the chair so bad that the EMTs could not remove her from the chair at the house and had to remove her through a window and take her to an emergency room.”
Frieberger died just hours later. The coroner determined the cause of death was pneumonia, a blood infection, and a significant amount of the painkiller Tramadol.
“The investigation determined that her sister had been the one who was providing the medication,” Negangard said.
Holdcraft also lied during the investigation and while under oath at the grand jury hearing, leading to the two perjury charges.
Holdcraft is an employee of the Dearborn County Health Department. Negangard said that does not factor into the case.