Woman charged in death of mother, allegedly failed to provide elder care

Jim Melwert
June 04, 2019 - 2:29 pm
Ellyn Gottlieb

Jim Melwert/KYW Newsradio


MEDIA, Pa. (KYW Newsradio) — A 58 year-old Havertown woman has been charged in the death of her mother, as authorities say she drained her bank account and failed to care for her, letting her live in a home with conditions described as deplorable. 

Patricia Gottlieb, 83, was taken out of the David Drive home in January 2018 after the Delaware County Services for the Aging was asked to check on her. Investigators described the home as being "in complete shambles," with a water leak and a strong stench of urine and feces.

Delaware County District Attorney Kat Copeland said the elderly woman was examined at an emergency room, where it was determined she had stage-four ulcers from sitting in the same position for long periods of time.

“She had so many wounds and sores that they couldn’t be counted,” said Copeland.

Gottlieb died in March 2018 from complications of infections of those sores, according to the medical examiner. Her 58-year-old daughter, Ellyn Gottlieb, is now charged with her death, facing felony neglect of care of a dependent person as well as aggravated assault.

According to Copeland, Ellyn Gottlieb took her mother out of a nursing home in September 2017 when that home tried to collect nearly $23,000 that was past due.

“That debt was not able to be paid because Ellyn Gottlieb depleted her mother’s bank accounts,” she explained.

Copeland said there were more than $88,000 of unauthorized withdrawals from her mother’s checking account, including payments to QVC and an online bidding website.

Copeland called the case "tragic," in which "a mother was inhumanely treated by her daughter — the very person who was entrusted with her care."

“As a result of both her actions and her inactions, Ellyn Gottlieb caused her mother’s death.”