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Felony abuse charge filed for woman accused of shutting off 91-year-old’s power

(County 17)

GILLETTE, Wyo. — A Campbell County woman has been charged with a felony after allegedly turning off a vulnerable adult’s power during cold weather in early January, Campbell County court records say. 

Debbie D. Lynn, a Campbell County resident, is charged with felony abuse of a vulnerable adult after she allegedly turned off a 91-year-old woman’s power when the outside temperature was 10 degrees on Jan. 8, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed in the case. 

The incident was reported by the 91-year-old’s son, who had stayed with her while she recovered from the flu for three months. The son said he had laid down to nap around noon and awoke to find the house unusually cold, the affidavit states. 

Per court documents, the furnace was not running and the son confirmed with a local energy company that the power had been turned off. He suspected Lynn and another individual were responsible and contacted the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office. 

When Lynn was contacted, she said the son was living in the residence and she would not be paying for his utilities. She also responded angrily that she wouldn’t be harassed by law enforcement when a deputy questioned whether she believed it was a good idea to shut someone’s power off with the temperature approaching zero degrees, the affidavit states. 

The energy company confirmed being contacted by Lynn, the utility holder, who initially requested that the power to the 91-year-old woman’s residence be shut off the previous month, but later emailed to have it shut off on Jan. 8, according to the affidavit.  

After speaking with a deputy, Lynn contacted the energy company to have the power turned back on, per court documents. 

A preliminary hearing has been set for Feb. 13 in Circuit Court to determine if sufficient probable cause exists to bind the case over to District Court for further action.