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Prosecutors say Pennsylvania woman kept sister in man-made wooden cage

Leona Biser

Leona Biser

WASHINGTON COUNTY, Pa. — A Pennsylvania woman stands accused of keeping her sister in a manmade wooden cage with only a dirty mattress — and providing little to no medical care.

False imprisonment and neglect charges were filed Jan. 15 against Leona Biser, 51, of Vestaburg, Pennsylvania, including neglect of a care-dependent person, abuse of a care-dependent person, recklessly endangering another person, unlawful restraint, and false imprisonment.

Prosecutors said Biser kept her sister, Loretta Lancaster, 53, in the man-made cell that sat in the home’s living room.

“This defendant professed to be caring for her sister when, in fact, the home was in deplorable condition, had no running water, and the victim was not getting her prescribed medicines,” said Attorney General Josh Shapiro in a news release. “We fight to protect those who cannot protect themselves, and our agents have made sure the victim has received needed care and will no longer have to suffer daily living in a cage.”

After authorities discovered Lancaster, she was taken to the hospital for treatment of a urinary tract infection and Rhabdomyolysis, which is a breakdown of muscle that can be caused by infection.

During her hospital stay, the attorney general reported Lancaster’s condition improved to the point where she regained some mobility and was working with a speech therapist.

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