Philadelphia police: Special-needs woman bound to bed

Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 3:33pm

A woman was found bound to a bed late Friday night in Philadelphia when police responded to a neighborhood dispute, police said.

Around midnight, officers arrested Regina Bennett, 46, at her residence on Linton Street in connection with threats and assault against a neighbor in an ongoing dispute. As officers were leaving, neighbors told them that a small child may also have been living in Bennett's residence, Officer Tanya Little said.

Initially, police saw no signs of a child living at the residence. But after conducting a full walk-through, they found a 36-year-old woman tied to a bed in "unsuitable conditions," Little said.

The woman was extremely thin, with apparent sores and injuries to her body. According to Little, she also seemed to have special needs and has a limited vocabulary.

"We went in there looking for a child, and then this is what we found," Little said.

The woman was freed by officers and transported to Einstein Hospital, where she was being evaluated Sunday. Little said it appears to be a case of neglect, and police are unsure for how long the alleged abuse had been going on. Officers and medics are also investigating whether the woman had been sexually abused, she said.

Bennett's relationship to the woman is still under investigation, Little said.

According to Little, Bennett is being held at Philadelphia Police Headquarters. She is charged with terroristic threats, simple assault, public drunkenness, aggravated assault, unlawful restraint, false imprisonment and related offenses.

It was unclear Sunday afternoon whether Bennett has an attorney.

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