Deputies Monday found a 52-year-old mentally disabled woman malnourished and bruised in a homeless shelter, five days after she was put on a bus by her allegedly abusive caregivers in New York.
The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said deputies discovered Melinda Vinson at the City Rescue Mission on Monday morning after receiving a call from police in New York.
Police said Vinson arrived in Jacksonville at the weekend, after John Dennee, 47, his wife Kathleen, 44, and their 26-year-old daughter, Janet, put her and her 24-year-old daughter, who also is mentally disabled, on a long-distance bus with a one-way ticket.
The Dennee family allegedly sent the two women away Thursday as investigators looked into allegations that they had beaten the two women and kept them as prisoners in their home for 10 years while living off their welfare checks.
The three Dennees were arrested Friday in their Grieg, N.Y., home. They have been charged with one felony count of unlawful imprisonment pending further charges, police said. They are held on $50,000 bail.
Police said they found Vinson's daughter in Syracuse, N.Y. Saturday with numerous bruises.
John Wood of the New York State Police said the Dennees often beat Vinson and her daughter with canes and rubber hoses, forced them to go without food and water for days at a time and kept them in restraints.
The Dennees allegedly lived off the women's disability checks.