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Western Md. Man Charged With Severely Abusing Mother

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (AP) -- A western Maryland man is charged with abusing his 82-year-old mother after she was hospitalized with multiple bruises and broken bones.

The Washington County Sheriff's Office said Monday that 62-year-old Earl Benner Jr. kept his mother locked in a filthy, unheated room with five dogs in their Sharpsburg home. He's charged with offenses including abuse of a vulnerable adult and first- and second-degree assault.

Benner couldn't be reached for comment. Neither he nor his lawyer immediately returned calls.

Benner allegedly told investigators he has been his mother's sole caretaker since his father died in 1989.

He allegedly told police he barricaded his mother in the room to keep her from wandering outside.

Benner was arrested Thursday. His bail was set at $40,000 Friday. It's not clear if he was released.

(Copyright 2015 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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