Son pleads innocent to case of assaulting elderly mother
OSSIPEE — One of two suspects facing felony assault and kidnapping charges entered not guilty pleas during arraignment in Third Circuit Superior Court in Ossipee on Thursday.
Defendant Darin J. Brown, 43, of Stoneham, Mass., appeared in court with attorney Eric Wolpin.
Earlier this month, a Carroll County grand jury handed up felony indictments against Brown and his wife, Sharon Giordano, 38. Each was charged with two counts of kidnapping, one count of second-degree assault, and one count of criminal restraint.
The couple is charged with taking Darin Brown';s 80-year-old mother, Joan Brown, from her Stoneham, Mass., home and bringing her to a home in West Ossipee that Sharon Giordano owns with her ex-husband.
Ossipee police began investigating at the request of a private investigator hired by other family members. The couple is charged with not providing medical attention to the elderly woman after she fractured her hip during a fall in the basement.
Joan Brown required medical care and surgery after police found her and arrested her son and daughter-in-law.
Giordano did not appear in court on Thursday, and Assistant County Attorney Stephen Murray said her arraignment would be continued to an as-yet-unspecified date.
At a probable cause hearing in July, Wolpin had argued that Joan Brown was not held against her will, was never restrained and had access to a telephone. Joan Brown had also told one witness that the fracture was caused accidentally. Witnesses, including Det. Sgt. Robert King, private detective James Pero, and attorney and guardian ad litem Diane McGarvey, testified for the state during the probable cause hearing held July 25. At that hearing, McGarvey said there was an investigation related to a civil case involving Joan Brown vs. Sharon Giordano where $600,000 may have been fraudulently transferred from Joan';s account into Giordano';s.
Murray declined to comment on any state or federal investigation that may be involved regarding the funds transfers.
Both defendants are being held on $50,000 cash bail.
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Larissa Mulkern may be reached at LMulkern@newstote.com.