Ringleader, accomplices charged with kidnapping, aggravated assault

Four mentally disabled people were locked in a dirty boiler room in the basement – one of them chained to a radiator, as Eric Johnson reports for the Chicago Tribune – leading to a plethora of charges against alleged ringleader 50-year-old Linda Weston and her two accomplices, including kidnapping and aggravated assault.

As Johnson reports, Weston is said to have faked her way to the four peoples’ federal Social Security Disability checks, posing as their caregiver.

Weston has a prior criminal record for murder.

Law enforcement officer Joseph Green was one of those who investigated the case. “There were a couple water bottles but no food or anything. There was a bucket they used to urinate in,” Green said.

Green also said the people were brought to the hospital for “much needed medical attention,” as Johnson reports.

Many different agencies were involved in the case, including the FBI and Social Security Administration.

Weston apparently moved from city to city, leading investigators to suspect that she may have other people locked away in other locations. At the time of Johnson’s report, Weston was not cooperating with authorities.

Source: Chicago Tribune, “Bond set for captors of disabled adults locked in filthy room,” by Eric Johnson, 10/17/11