Mary Holly was arrested in Coconut Creek, Florida last week after she allegedly left her elderly ward in a casino parking lot for several hours while she went gambling. Holly, 53, has been charged with one count of neglect of an elderly person. She is currently being held on $6,000 bail bond after an initial hearing. It is not yet known whether Holly has retained a private criminal defense attorney.
Records indicate that there were two active warrants out for Holly’s arrest in Palm Beach County when she was detained on the neglect charge. The warrants were for charges of grant theft and exploitation of an elderly person. Those charges are unrelated to the Sapstein charges. Details on the other two charges are not currently available, although they likely are related to Holly’s work as a nurse and caretaker.
Holly is reportedly a registered nurse who lives with Sapstein as a caretaker. The elderly woman owns a residence in Boca Raton. Since Sapstein has dementia, she needs assistance with everyday tasks such as paying bills, buying groceries, and personal care.
The neglect charge at hand came as a result of an incident on February 19th. At approximately 4:49 p.m., surveillance footage shows that Holly drove into the Seminole Casino Coconut Creek at 5550 NW 40th Street in Belle Sapstein’s silver Saturn. The elderly woman was a passenger vehicle. Holly allegedly parked the car and went into the casino, leaving Sapstein in the car.
At approximately 7:00 p.m., someone called police to report that Sapstein was sitting in a car by herself in the parking lot of the casino. The caller remains anonymous. An officer was dispatched 7:07 p.m. to assess the situation.
The officer reported that Sapstein did not appear to be injured, but did not have food, water, or a cell phone in the car with her. She was unable to answer the officer’s questions about herself or her medical situation. Sapstein was transported to Northwest Medical Center in Margate for monitoring, where she is believed to still be recovering. Relatives have not spoken out about the incident.
According to the affidavit, Holly returned to the car at that point and found the officer. She reportedly told him that she thought leaving Sapstein in the car by herself was acceptable. She was arrested on the spot.
Following her arrest, Holly’s case made headlines when she fainted during her initial hearing. She fell to the floor during the hearing, causing audible ruckus in the courtroom. The judge took a recess so that Holly could receive medical attention. When the hearing resumed, she was in a wheelchair, but she requested that the hearing move forward.
The judge ordered Holly to suspend all of her caretaking activities and refrain from contacting Sapstein during the proceedings. Since she normally lives with Sapstein, it is unclear where she will be living while the trial progresses. It is also unclear who will be taking care of Holly’s patients.