The woman employed to care for Ann Marie Smith for six years before her death in 'disgusting and degrading' circumstances has been identified.
The woman employed to care for Ann Marie Smith for six years before her death in 'disgusting and degrading' circumstances has been identified.

Ann Marie’s carer hires top lawyer as police investigate

The carer at the centre of a manslaughter investigation into the death of Ann Marie Smith has hired prominent Adelaide barrister Stephen Ey.

Rosemary Maione, of Hectorville, was the full-time carer of Ms Smith, who had cerebral palsy and last month died from septic shock and multiple organ failure.

Mr Ey told The Advertiser on Tuesday he had advised his client to make no public statements at this time.

"As is apparent, there is an ongoing investigation as to the unfortunate death of Ms Smith," he said.

"As a result, it would not be appropriate for (Ms Maione) to give any statement at this stage - at the appropriate time, we will reply.

"In the meantime, I ask the press and the public to respect my client's privacy."

Ms Smith, 54, was found with severe pressure sores and malnutrition when she underwent major surgery on April 5, but died the following day.

Ms Smith was on an NDIS-funded support plan when she was found in her Kensington Park home, in what police have described as "disgusting and degrading" circumstances.

Integrity Care SA, who Ms Maione worked for, has remained silent for two days, with a spokesman only saying the company is seeking legal advice before commenting further.

Ms Maione is believed to be staying at her Hectorville home. Her neighbours say she lives there with her son and they bought the house about 12 months ago.

Neighbours also told The Advertiser that police detectives have visited her house several times over the past two days.

It was also revealed on Tuesday that Ms Maione had previously worked for Anglicare SA. She was subcontracted to fill three community aged shifts for the service last year.

Anglicare SA chief executive Peter Sandeman said all ties with Integrity Care had been severed, pending an official review.

Mr Sandeman said he was not aware of any problems with the work Integrity Care had undertaken for Anglicare SA.

However, he said of Integrity Care: "The fact that a single worker was working unsupervised all day every day with a single client is really an indication some of the checks and balances were missing."

Flowers left outside the Kensington Park home where Ann Marie Smith lived. Picture: Gabriel Polychronis
Flowers left outside the Kensington Park home where Ann Marie Smith lived. Picture: Gabriel Polychronis

A State Government taskforce has been established to investigate the circumstances which led to Ms Smith's death.

Premier Steven Marshall said the taskforce was yesterday assembling members, who were expected to have their first meeting by the end of the week.

"It could be several months until we get information back from the police and from the coroner," Mr Marshall said.

"That's why this taskforce has been put together very early."

Originally published as Ann Marie's carer hires top lawyer as police investigate


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