THE family of an 85-year-old pensioner assaulted in a nursing home have spoken out against the attacker’s sentence and the home’s management.

Last week Pauline Alison Molineaux, 54, was given a three-month suspended prison term for making Patricia Loudon go back to her room and “forcefully undressing” her in the early evening at The Lodge home for elderly people in Heslington.

Mrs Loudon is slightly under 5ft tall, weighs seven stone and suffers from dementia.

Her family said the incident left her so traumatised she is now frightened of getting dressed or undressed and it had affected her husband, retired bus driver Thomas Loudon, 87, who underwent major surgery for an unrelated heart problem shortly after she was attacked. They have been married for 65 years.

“It shouldn’t have happened,” said Mr Loudon. “It has taken years off my life. I haven’t got faith in that home at all. This (the sentence) is no deterrent, none whatsoever. The judge hasn’t thought about us at all.”

He said the best way to handle his wife if her condition made her behave oddly, he said, was to give her a cup of tea. The family said the home had told them Mrs Loudon had not given them any problems.

The family moved Mrs Loudon to another home a week after the assault and claim that the home insisted on them paying fees for another three weeks because they had not given the usual four weeks’ notice. They are also concerned about the procedures carried out when Molineaux was recruited by the home.

A spokesman for The Lodge said: “The safety and wellbeing of all of our residents has always been, and will continue to be, of paramount importance to us at The Lodge. As soon as we became aware of the alleged incident involving care worker Pauline Molineaux and Patricia Loudon we followed robust procedures already in place, and immediately suspended Pauline Molineaux. Following this incident we have further strengthened our recruitment procedures and are confident that our residents will continue to receive exemplary levels of care.”

A member of staff alerted management to what had happened to Mrs Loudon and the home called in police. Molineaux, of The Village, Haxby, initially denied assault, but changed her plea.