A CARER held a cup of tea over the head of an elderly, bed bound woman with dementia and threatened to call the police if she failed to drink it, heard Skipton Magistrates.

Zaria Bi and Farzana Bibi were the main carers for the woman who received four visits during the day and one in the evening at her home in Sutton-in-Craven, the court heard on Friday.

Bi, 48, and Bibi, 41, both from Keighley, had no formal qualifications and had just shadowed other carers before starting work. They worked for a private care company looking after the woman during the day, while a separate business carried out the evening visits, said prosecutor Melanie Ibbotson.

Bi and Bibi had been caring for the woman for 18 months since February 2017 until her daughter became suspicious in October last year and installed a covert CCTV camera in her bedroom, said Ms Ibbotson.

Their regular routine was to spend 40 to 45 minutes with the woman, carrying out personal care, attending to her needs, feeding and moving her, and repositioning her from her bed to a chair using a hoist.

After viewing the CCTV footage, the woman’s daughter concluded that her mother had been assaulted and called the police. A member of social services described the two carers’ actions in the footage as ‘disgusting’ and ‘shocking’ and said how their victim would have been frightened and confused by what had happened, said Ms Ibbotson.

Bi was filmed waving her fist at the woman, putting her face right up to her face and shouting at her.

“In the CCTV footage, Bi places a cup of tea above (the woman’s) head and mocks her, threatening her that she will call the police if she does not drink the tea,” said Ms Ibbotson.

Also in the footage, Bibi is seen striking one of the woman’s arms and hands with no apparent reason, while at other times the women are seen talking on their phones and ignoring their victim.

Bi, admitted to common assault, and Bibi, admitted assault by beating. Both women were of previous good character and between them had seven children. They had both lost their jobs, and had not managed to find new employment, the court was told.

Mitigating for Bi, from Victoria Road, Keighley, and Bibi, from Goulbourne Street, Keighley, Mrs Khan said that the women had been immature and had not believed their actions were serious at the time. She said they had told her the tea would have been tepid, and that it was their way of ‘getting through their daily chores’.

They had now changed their opinions following the intervention of their community which did not treat their elderly in such a way, she said.

Magistrates called for an all options report to be prepared and adjourned sentencing to May 24. They were allowed conditional bail in that they do not seek employment as carers.