Florida caretaker arrested after video shows her shoving, hitting disabled man, deputies say

Chelsey Payne, 30, faces charges for the abuse of a disabled adult

Chelsey Payne, 30 (Courtesy of Flagler County Sheriff's Office. Copyright 2022 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.)

PALM COAST, Fla. – A Florida caretaker was arrested on Dec. 2 after being caught on camera abusing a disabled man in her care last month.

On Nov. 22, Flagler County deputies responded to reports about a woman physically abusing a disabled man at the Palm Coast Community Center a day prior, the sheriff’s office said.

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The community center provided investigators with surveillance footage showing 30-year-old Chelsey Payne pushing the man, as well as hitting him in the face several times with both an open hand and a closed fist.

Deputies said Payne, who was identified via the footage, was an employee of East Coast Habilitation Options, Inc., a company that provides service for those with developmental disabilities. According to a news release, Payne was fired by the company after they were made aware of the incident.

[WARNING: This video contains physical abuse, and may be disturbing to some viewers]

“This supposed ‘caretaker’ clearly did not show any care of compassion was she was abusing a disabled person,” Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly said in a statement. “We send our deepest sympathies to the victim and their family.”

Payne was arrested in her home in Putnam County and was taken to the Flagler County jail, where she was later released on bond.

She is facing a charge for the abuse of a disabled adult, whose identity is not being released at this time.

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About the Author:

Penny De La Cruz started working at WKMG-TV in September 2021. Before joining News 6, Penny worked at KSAT 12 in San Antonio, Texas.