Woman will stand trial for beating in Detroit group home

Caretaker accused of using broom handle, cord to beat autistic woman

DETROIT - A 49-year-old Detroit foster home worker has been bound over to stand trial in the videotaped beating of a disabled woman with a mop handle and extension cord.

Kadia Konate Dennard, 49, is accused of using a broom handle and extension cord to hit the victim, Vera Gossett, at Strathmoor Manor.

She had originally been charged with abuse and assault, but an additional charge of torture was added during a hearing Thursday.

A co-worker at the home recorded video of the incident on her cellphone.

Gossett has a severe form of autism and can't speak. Her mother, Jacqueline Gosset, has mobility issues and decided to move her daughter into the group home seven years ago. She said she trusted the home until she saw the cellphone video, which contains graphic content.

"It hurts, it hurts, it's painful to see my child like this," the mother said. "It's very painful."

Dominique Blade, the certified nursing assistant who shot the video, had just started working at at the group home. She said she was so disturbed by what she saw that she decided to start recording things.

Blade testified that she saw Dennard abuse Vera Gossett for three hours.

"She started hitting her … all over her body," Blade said.

"She [Konate-Dennard] told me, 'Well this is the way you have to handle her, she's an animal, you have to handle her and deal with her like this,'" Blade said.

The owner, Bartholomew Ajulufoh, has had his license revoked and it isn't the first time he's been investigated by the state. Last year he was found guilty for how another resident had been restrained.

Vera Gossett has been moved to a different home and is doing better. The other residents have also been taken out of the home.

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