Nursing home sexual abuse in Kentucky has become more pronounced in recent years with many caregivers charged for the crime. Last month, four employees of Frankfort-based Community Choices Unlimited have been indicated for their failure to report sexual abuse of residents by another caregiver. Twenty-three-year-old Damon Heath was arrested in February for committing sexual abuse, including sodomy, at the nursing home offering care services to intellectually disabled adults.
The four caregivers are charged with “wanton neglect, Class D felonies, and failure to notify reported abuse” by Heath, who has been charged with “five counts of third-degree sodomy and four counts of first-degree sexual abuse.” The allegations carry a prison term between three months and five years depending on individual guilt. The accused are summoned by the Franklin District Court on May 12 to formally answer their failure to tell authorities about sexual abuse of Kentucky nursing home residents. On June 19, Franklin Circuit Court will take up the felony charges.
Almost a fifth of all cases evaluated by a Kentucky nursing home abuse lawyer point toward incidents that qualify as sexual exploitation. “These heinous crimes committed against helpless victims require additional responsibility by facility caregivers to report allegations; caregivers cannot simply turn a blind eye to known abuse or neglect and those that fail to report abuse and neglect will be prosecuted… as always, I encourage anyone who suspects patient neglect or abuse in a nursing home, Medicaid facility, or personal care home to report it to my office using our tip line at (877) ABUSE-TIP,” declared Attorney General Jack Conway speaking on the incident.
Kentucky Nursing Home Sexual Abuse
Sexual exploitation of nursing home residents is not new in Kentucky. However, in the last two years there has been a noticeable increase in the claims and indictments because of increased vigilance on such matters. Most common examples or signs include:
- sexual assault
- sexual contact
- unwanted touching
- talking on sex subjects
- showing pornographic content
- sexual exploitation
- sexual coercion
- rape or forcible intercourse
- sexual harassment
Nursing Home Negligence Blamed for Rape of Residents
About a third of Kentucky nursing homes reportedly fail to provide a secure environment for residents, which creates an environment for potential sexual abuses. Even many have no proper mechanism for a background check to ensure employees with criminal history related to such incidents are not hired. In fact, there are many instances where sexual abuse is resorted to by caregivers as a means of retaliation. Above all, lack of monitoring, non-sensitization of the staff, and strict action perpetuate such evil misdeeds. Those with dementia are particularly vulnerable to such exploitation.
Recently, a Michigan family sued a nursing home alleging that its negligence allowed a caregiver to repeatedly rape a 69-year-old woman. The caregiver is accused of sexual assaults that may lead to up to 20 years in prison.
In Missouri, a Nixa nursing home caregiver was charged with raping and sodomizing a patient. The 25-year-old accused raped the victim, a dementia patient, who was supposed to be kept under observation. The victim was so afraid of the caregiver that she followed his order unwillingly and was forced to have oral sex and sexual intercourse. According to a complaint filed in August 2014, a former Iowa lawmaker allegedly raped his 78-year-old wife, a dementia patient, at a state nursing home.
Our expert KY nursing home abuse lawyer offers to assist plaintiffs fighting against mistreatment and negligence at state care centers. If you have reasons to believe that a resident is subject to nursing home sexual abuse in Kentucky, please contact us or call on 1-866-447-0150 to discuss the best course of action.