ROCK HILL, S.C. (CN2 NEWS) – Two women have turned themselves into Rock Hill Police custody for a death officers say occurred in August of 2023.
Police Officers confirm, 73-year-old Martha Rutledge and her 68-year-old sister Nancy Rutledge are both in custody with a bond hearing set for Friday afternoon.
Authorities say the women were issued warrants for Abuse or Neglect of a Vulnerable Adult Resulting in Death. That vulnerable adult was the suspect’s 99-year-old mother.
Investigators say at the time of death in 2023, signs of possible neglect were noticed. Following the completion of an autopsy and toxicology report, officers were able to confirm the victim died from a lack of medical care and developed infections caused by bed sores.
Both suspects appeared in front of a judge Friday at the Rock Hill Municipal Court to carry out a bond hearing for the two sisters. The hearing ended with a judge decision to set bond at $40,000 cash or surety for Nancy Rutledge, and her sister Martha was granted the same bond amount.
During the hearing, officers who responded to the scene in 2023 gave testimony of the victims condition when first responders attempted to revive the mother of the two suspects. An investigator also detailed further that the victim had not visited a health professional for at least 10 years before her death.
Officer Mark Schurig with the Police Department stated he was in the room when EMS moved the victim from her bed to the floor in an attempt to save her life, and described the mother’s condition as “horrible.”
Family and friends of both suspects also took to the podium in support of the two Rutledge sisters. Ann Rutledge, the sister of the two suspects who lives in Florida traveled to Rock Hill to explain to a judge that her sisters loved their mother and would not willingly neglect her health.
Two family friends also supported this statement by detailing first hand interactions of both the victim and the two suspects interacting together in positive ways including during a birthday party held for the mother months before her death.
Ann, the third Rutledge sister stated to our cameras that she planned to sign the needed paperwork to bond out both suspects immediately after she left the courtroom.