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Conyers man arrested for elder abuse
Danny Hayward Wilkerson

A Conyers man was charged with elder abuse after his elderly parents were found living in their own excrement, with open sores on their body, surrounded by rotting food.

On Friday, around 6 p.m., Rockdale County Sheriff's Office deputies, as well as a crisis team supported by the state Department of Behavioral Health and Disabilities, were called out to 2618 Union Church Road, the home of a 78-year-old woman and her 71-year-old husband.

A Loganville woman - the couple's niece - and the couple's grandson are seeking power of attorney for the elderly couple. The woman told deputies the 78-year-old woman suffered from dementia and her husband was not able to take care of her or himself, according to the Sheriff's Office report.

The elderly couple had reportedly allowed the 78-year-old woman's son, Danny Hayward Wilkerson, to live in a shed on the property after he was released from prison. Wilkerson had reportedly yelled at the relatives who were seeking power of attorney. Wilkerson left the property and was not present at the house when the deputies arrived.

The reporting deputy wrote, "I walked into the living room and was immediately overwhelmed by the smell of urine and feces. There were stains on the carpet and furniture. I looked at (the elderly man's) recliner and saw stains from where he had been urinating and defecating on himself in the chair. There was also blood on the chair from the open sores (he) had on his arms."

The bathroom reportedly had feces on the floor and over the toilet. The bed reportedly had urine stains. The kitchen reportedly had rotten food on the counters.

"The light did not work in the kitchen so I turned on my flashlight. When I turned on my flashlight, I observed several roaches running on the counters. I then saw several pots and pans on the counters. There were spider webs connected from the pots and pans to the walls with spiders on the webs. I opened the fridge and was overcome by the smell of what I believed to be rotting food. The fridge was empty except for eggs, squash and butter."

The smell of the house was so overwhelming the reporting deputy had to stop what he was doing and go outside.

Witnesses told the deputy that "before (the 78-year-old-woman) developed Alzheimer's, the house was immaculate because (she) was almost OCD about the cleanliness of her house."

They also said they believed Wilkerson was stealing his mother's checks in the mail to feed his crack addiction.

One woman said she had seen Wilkerson "cock his fist back at (his mother) and demand money from her."

While they were in the driveway, deputies noticed Wilkerson's truck turn onto Union Church Road. When deputies walked to their patrol cars, Wilkerson turned into the driveway of a nearby house and deputies followed. Wilkerson, who had a suspended license, had gotten out of the truck by the time deputies caught up. He was detained at gunpoint by deputies.

Wilkerson reportedly said he knew the residents of that house. The residents told deputies they had seen Wilkerson before but did not know him.

While he was being put into the patrol car, "Danny refused to place his feet in the back... and kept yelling... ‘F--- you motherf------!'" He also reportedly told the reporting deputy "You're going to hell for doing this!"

When he learned he was being charged with elder neglect and exploitation, Wilkerson reportedly said that "he cooked for (the elderly couple) every night and that he cleans the house."

Emergency medical services transported the 78-year-old woman to Rockdale Medical due to pains in her leg. Adult protective services were notified for both the elderly man and woman.

Wilkerson was charged with elder neglect, cruelty to a person 65 years or older, obstruction, terroristic threats, and driving with a suspended license. He was booked into the Rockdale County jail and is still in jail with a bond of $179,066.