Fenland care worker dragged autistic teenager by ankles after youngster grabbed female colleagues

A SENIOR care worker assaulted an autistic teenager by dragging him to his room by the ankles, after the agitated youngster had grabbed two female members of staff.

Following the incident Tony Rust asked colleagues to keep his actions a secret - but a colleague shocked by such behaviour reported the matter to senior staff.

Appearing before Fenland magistrates today 52-year-old Rust, of Pyecroft Lane, Walpole St Peter, admitted assaulting the 19-year-old at the Willow Lodge care home in Gorefield.

Rust’s victim is severely autistic, cannot speak and communicates through the use of cards and hand gestures, the court heard from prosecutor Andrea Fawcett.

On August 29 the teenager had been agitated and when restrained had grabbed two female members of staff.


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Rust had pulled the teenager by the ankles, dragging him along the carpet; despite protests from other members of staff. The teenager suffered some bruising and roughened skin on his back.

Mitigating, Alexis Dite said Rust had believed it was necessary to remove the teenager from a volatile situation. He had not intended to cause injury.

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“He had seen the teenager grab two female colleagues, he restrained him against the wall in a proper manner,” he said.

“When the teenager went for his genitals, he felt he should be removed from the situation. He now accepts it was not proportionate.”

He said there had been 21 incidents between August 22 and September 7, when the teenager had needed physical intervention, but added: “He deeply regrets any injury caused, he has to live with his actions that day.”

The offence had meant that Rust can longer work in the care industry, added Mr Dite.

Sentencing was adjourned until January 4.

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