Buford woman charged with neglect, exploitation of an 80-year-old

A Buford woman is free on bond following her arrest after an elderly woman was found last week living in unsanitary conditions inside a camper at a campground on Lake Lanier.


“HCSO deputies responded to Shoal Creek Campground just before 3:30 p.m., Thursday, June 13, for a welfare check after campers reported hearing someone, later identified as the 80-year-old victim, screaming for help. When deputies arrived, they found a med unit at the scene assisting the victim, who was bedbound and lying in urine.

Deputies were able to contact the victim’s caregiver, 54-year-old Gretchen P. Manley-Philyaw, who confirmed she had left the victim in the camper overnight. Manley-Philyaw indicated she would be taking the woman to her home in Buford. Both the suspect and the victim were allowed to leave the scene.

As a result of the follow-up investigation with the med unit team and with Adult Protective Services (APS), HCSO deputies obtained warrants for Manley-Philyaw for neglect of an elder person and exploitation of an elder person, both felony offenses.

On Tuesday, June 18, the APS investigator called HCSO to report Manley-Philyaw had not taken the victim to her Buford residence, but instead, was in the camper at Shady Grove Campground in Forsyth County. HCSO provided vehicle and camper registration info to the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) and FCSO deputies were able to apprehend the suspect and transport her to Hall County.

The victim was released to the care of a family member.

Manley-Philyaw was booked into the Hall County Jail just after 6:30 p.m. Tuesday. She posted a bond of $20,000 and was released from custody Thursday, June 20.”