An aged-care worker is in custody on Wednesday night, accused of savagely attacking an elderly woman.
The 81-year-old is in hospital recovering from shocking injuries.
Police allege that Phillip Athanasos was on duty at Pine Lodge in Plympton North on Sunday night when he allegedly began beating the 81-year-old resident over the head.
A court heard the alleged victim feared for her life as Athanasos put his hand over her mouth and said "you'll never cause any trouble ever again."
She was taken to the Flinders Medical Centre with serious head and facial injuries.
Staff reported the incident to police the following day and Athanasos was arrested after being questioned on Tuesday night.
The 45-year-old aged care worker is claiming innocence, saying the victim fell and when he tried to help her the sight of blood caused him to faint on her bed.
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Bail was denied due to the seriousness of the allegations and the vulnerability of the victim at the time of the alleged attack.
While Athanasos will front court again in April, Southern Cross Care says it is taking the matter seriously and working with the resident's family.
Police believe it was an isolated incident but the investigation is ongoing.