A Powder Springs man has been convicted of felony elder neglect in relation to the 2017 death of a 91-year-old east Cobb nursing home resident.
Landon Jean Pierre Terrel, 35, was convicted by a Cobb jury on Wednesday of one felony charge of elder neglect, for which he faces up to 20 years in prison.
Terrel, who has been in custody for the last 701 days, will be sentenced Aug. 19 — almost two years to the day since his Aug. 17 arrest in 2017 in relation to the death of 91-year-old Adam Bennett.
The Cobb County District Attorney’s office said Terrel was found not guilty of three other charges: two counts of elder abuse and one of felony murder based on abuse.
“After a weeklong trial and about three days of deliberations the jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict on the charge of felony murder based on neglect,” the DA’s office said in a news release.
Senior Assistant District Attorney Jason Marbutt said this was a tough case.
“Too often we think of justice as a result, instead of a process,” he said. “We respect the verdict delivered by the jury.”
The DA’s office said Cobb Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Christopher Gulledge ruled Bennett’s death was a result of blunt force trauma by assault.
The DA’s office said Bennett was found with a bruised lip about 7:30 a.m. on Aug. 15, 2017 in his room of the Sunrise at East Cobb nursing home at 1551 Johnson Ferry Road in Marietta.
Bennett reportedly told a day shift worker “he punched me” while motioning to his face, chest and groin.
He soon became unresponsive and was rushed by ambulance to WellStar Kennestone Hospital, where he died on Aug. 18 having never regained consciousness.
Bennett’s reported injuries included facial bruising, multiple rib fractures and a collapsed lung.
Cobb police said Terrel was the only male working the overnight shift at the nursing home between Aug. 14 and 15.
Officers claim Terrel denied hitting Bennett and did not see facial bruising on the elderly man when he last checked on him before his shift ended at 6 a.m.
Terrel reportedly told investigators he checked on Bennett hourly and caught him falling out of bed the previous evening, when Bennett banged his chest into the bed.
Terrel admitted he used poor judgement in ignoring Bennett’s repeated complaints of pain after that, police said.
Arrest warrants claim Terrel admitted striking Bennett in the torso and choosing not to call for assistance or administer aid the night before the 91-year-old was hospitalized.
Bennett’s injuries listed on the warrants include broken ribs, a lacerated kidney and a punctured lung.