Milledgeville couple accused of abusing elderly veteran

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MILLEDGEVILLE, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – A Milledgeville couple is accused of abusing an 88-year-old war veteran after officers found him lying outside of a Matheson Road home smelling like feces and urine.

John Staggs Jr., 54, and Cynthia Staggs, 54, are charged with battery family violence, obstruction of an officer and cruelty to a person 65 years of age or older.

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“The incident first came to our attention when Officer Borders was patrolling Matheson Road and he observed an older male laying in the front yard of 740 Matheson Road, who was later identified as John Staggs Sr. Upon making contact with him, Borders noticed that the male had a strong odor of urine and feces and appeared to be disoriented,” said Maj. Mike Hudson, the Milledgeville Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Commander.

Staggs was also wearing a Depends diaper, which appeared to be soaked at the time, according to a news release from the department.

The officer called EMS and then spoke with John Staggs Jr. who said his father suffers from dementia and he would take his father to the hospital to be checked out.



Investigators went back to the home on Monday July 11 and found the living conditions to be “deplorable and unfit for a human being.”

Officers said Staggs Sr. also had physical signs of abuse including a severe diaper rash and multiple bruises all over his body.

Investigators said Staggs Jr. and his wife refused to cooperate with the detective’s instructions and both were charged with obstruction.

Based on the physical evidence of neglect and abuse, authorities placed an additional battery charge on the husband and wife, according to the news release.

The victim was taken to the hospital and is now being taken care of by another family member.