Caregiver Beats 91 Year-Old WWII Veteran over the Head with Oxygen Tank – Leaves Him for Dead
A 91 year-old World War II veteran survived a brutal attack by his caregiver after he refused to give her a blank check.
Elena Erickson beat Michael Nicholas Tristano over the head with an oxygen tank and left him in a pool of blood.
Elena Erickson, Sarasota County Jail booking photo
Police say a tough 91-year-old World War II veteran survived a brutal attack by his caregiver who is accused of hitting him on the head with an oxygen tank and then leaving him to die in a pool of blood when he refused to give her a blank check.
Elena Erickson, 45, of North Port, is charged with two counts of attempted murder and tampering with evidence.
Investigators say North Port Fire Rescue crews responded to the home of Michael Nicholas Tristano, age 91, at 8:12 a.m. on May 16. Erickson, who is Tristano’s caregiver, told paramedics that she found Tristano lying in a pool of blood and urine near the dining room table. He had a laceration on his head. Erickson told paramedics that Tristano was home alone from about 10:30 p.m. on May 15 to 8:10 a.m. on May 16 when she arrived to check on him.
According to an arrest affidavit, Tristano had a laceration above his left eye and multiple lacerations to the top and back of his head. He also had skin tears on both of his wrists and forearms.
Tristano was transported to a local hospital. Four days later, detectives interviewed him at the medical center where he was being treated for his injuries. Tristano told detectives that Erickson arrived at his home at 7:45 p.m. on May 15 to care for him as she has done for many years. He said that during the evening, they had been arguing about payment for his care and how he would not give her a blank check for her services. Tristano said that at about 9:30 p.m., Erickson took a portable, aluminum oxygen tank and struck him twice on top of his head while he was sitting at the dining room table.
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