Niece hopes 90-year-old victim did not remember assault

Niece hopes 90-year-old victim did not remember assault

The niece of a woman who died in a memory care facility within weeks of when authorities believe she was sexually assaulted in 2015 said she hoped her aunt did not recall what happened to her.

"I hope that the one blessing of her dementia was that she did not remember what happened to her. But I do believe that even if she did not remember the events, she remembered the fear. Changes in her behavior that we attributed to increasing dementia, I now believe could be attributed to that fear," the woman's niece wrote in a statement that Judge Tom Difanis considered before sentencing Dontrell Netter to 30 years in prison.

"I learned that dignity and safety were the two words that least described her last months of life," wrote the woman who acted as caregiver for her 90-year-old aunt before she became a resident of Bickford Cottage, 1002 S. Staley Road, C.

But the woman said she refused to let what happened to her aunt define the life of her "smart, kind, frugal, fiercely loyal" family member who had no children of her own.

She enclosed her aunt's obituary that showed she had a long and distinguished career in business and was active in her church.

"I am going to remember my aunt as the aunt who was at every important event of my life, who was with us for every holiday dinner, who spoiled me and my brother and who sent a card for every holiday with always a $5 bill inside even when I was in my 50s."

"I am going to remember her as the one who, ironically, told me to 'Be careful' every single time I said goodbye to her," she wrote.

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