Personal Injury

Caregiver charged in hypothermia death of disabled woman

Jean Lemire was alive when police arrived at her caregiver’s home in Calais, Vermont. But she was unconscious and only partially dressed. It was obvious to police what had happened to Lemire. The 47-year-old developmentally disabled woman who was involved in the Special Olympics and worked in a restaurant, was suffering from hypothermia as a result of going without medical attention, food or drink for six days.

Lemire was transported to Central Vermont Medical Center, where she was later pronounced dead, according to the Times Argus (Vermont).

Lemire lived at the home of Julie A. Davis, who was assigned to be her caregiver beginning last spring. Davis had had other disabled individuals living with her in the past but there were never any complaints from neighbors to police, according to the report. No previous abuse complaints had been filed and Davis’ home appeared tidy and well kept.

Davis worked for Lincoln Street, a specialized service agency. She, like other caregivers, received a monthly, tax-free stipend for having someone in her care.

Last summer was one of the rainiest on record for Vermont, which may have contributed to Lemire’s hypothermia and subsequent death, police said. Hypothermia is condition that results when the body loses too much heat and can hinder metabolism and bodily functions and can lead to death.

Davis was charged with abuse and neglect of a vulnerable adult by a caregiver, which carries a $10,000 fine and/or up to 15 years in prison. Davis is due in Washington County District Court on Dec. 4th.