An Illinois nursing home resident is the focus of allegations of sexual assault. According to reports, law enforcement suspects the male resident of sexually assaulting a fellow resident – an elderly woman asleep in her bed. Read on to learn more about the disturbing assault and what you can do to recognize nursing home abuse and take action.
Nursing Home Resident Sexual Assault
In August 2019, a Certified Nurses Assistant (CNA) reported a suspected sexual assault to supervisors at the nursing home Generations at Peoria. According to the report, the CNA helped a female resident prepare for bed. Per the usual routine, the CNA helped the resident brush her hair and get into bed.
About two hours later, it was time for nightly rounds. The CNA and another CNA started their rounds at opposite ends of assigned hallway. During the rounds, the CNA went back into the female residents room. She noted that the resident’s bed and bedding seems disturbed and unusual. She turned on the light and noticed that the resident’s hair was messy and wet. Also, she had red marks on the side of her face and she seemed afraid.
The CNA pulled the covers back, noting that the resident’s adult brief was around her ankles. One side was undone. Her gown was above her breasts. The second CNA went to get the nurse. When the nurse inspected the resident, the following was noted:
- Red marks on the groin
- Black hairs not belonging to the resident
- Wetness between the residents legs
The CNA’s reported the incident to supervisors and the police were called. The resident was taken to the hospital where a rape kit was performed. Fluid was found inside the resident. The resident gave the following statement,
“I was asleep and woke up to a man on top of me having sex with me. I sort of pushed the man, but he continued to have sex with me in my private parts.”
The resident said that she recognized the man, but does not know who he is.
Investigation Continues, Employees Ruled Out as Suspects
Initially, police and the nursing home took precautions, gathering DNA from two male employees. DNA tests reveal that male employees were not involved in the sexual assault. Instead, the focus of the investigation is on a male resident who has been removed from the facility. The facility was fined $25,000 for “failing to ensure a resident was free from abuse and sexual assault.”
As the investigation continues, a local news station reports that this is not the only issue at Generations at Peoria. There are more accusations against the facility. Also, one lawsuit may be filed shortly. Accusations include the facility being “chronically understaffed.” Other reports claim that the facility does not report medical events as they should.
A local attorney also says that Generations has yet to respond to two certified letters, which were signed for. The letters refer to a former resident who died while at the facility. He was a 93-year-old World War II veteran. He was at the facility for just 22 days when he died. The coroner ruled the cause of death as “frequent falls.” Medical records indicate there were several falls resulting in head injuries prior to his death.
According to Medicare.gov and the Illinois Department of Public Health, Generations is struggling to keep up with standards. The facility has received 11 citations in the last year, which is more than triple the national average. In the last three years, Generations has also received one federal fine and two state fines. Their Medicare rank is “below average.”
Sexual Assault in Nursing Homes
As sad as it is, sexual assault is a problem in nursing homes across the United States. Sexual assault and sexual abuse are among the most tragic types of nursing home abuse. The sexual assault at Generations was fairly easy to identify and begin an investigation. However, many cases of sexual assault or sexual abuse are not as easily to identify.
Victims of sexual assault are often afraid to speak up and tell their stories. They also may suffer from intimidation or fear of retaliation. In many cases, caregivers and family members are the first to recognize signs of sexual assault.
Report any signs of sexual abuse immediately. Take the resident to the hospital for emergency care and a rape kit if necessary. Furthermore, anyone who suspects sexual abuse should also contact law enforcement. Move the resident to a safe location while the investigation continues.
If someone you love lives in a nursing home, be mindful of the signs of sexual abuse or sexual assault:
- Unexplained bruising or injuries to breasts or genitals
- Torn or blood-stained clothing
- Bleeding in genital area
- Unusual fear, anxiety or depression
- Diagnosis of a sexually transmitted disease
If you notice any of these signs of nursing home abuse, contact your healthcare provider right away. Provide details of the injuries and your concerns.
Contact a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
After getting medical care, your next step is contacting a nursing home abuse lawyer. Above all else, nursing home residents have the right to a safe environment free from abuse, including sexual assault. A nursing home abuse lawyer can certainly help you protect these rights and ensure that those responsible for sexual abuse are held accountable.
If you suspect sexual abuse or sexual assault in a nursing home, contact Nursing Home Abuse Guide. Our legal professionals can help you get the legal guidance you need to protect your rights and pursue justice when nursing home abuse occurs. To request a free attorney consultation, call 1-888-548-9636.