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August 11, 2011

Women Sentenced in Nursing Home Elder Abuse Case (USA)


Women sentenced in nursing home elder abuse case
Ukiah Daily Journal Staff
 08/09/2011

Two ring leaders of a so-called prank involving the coating of elderly dementia patients at a Ukiah nursing home with slippery ointment have been sentenced to serve time in county jail as part of the case resolution, according to the Mendocino County District Attorney's Office.
Monica Rose Smith, 52, and Jennifer Louise Burton, 34, were ordered by Superior Court Judge Richard Henderson to serve 20 days in county jail for orchestrating the 2009 incident involving seven patients at Valley View Skilled Nursing facility on Dora Street. Henderson also placed the two Ukiah residents on two years probation after finding them guilty of misdemeanor charges of elder abuse.
Deputy District Attorney Douglas Parker said Tuesday the elder abuse convictions "will ensure that the ringleaders of this shameful prank will not be able to work in a position of trust at a skilled nursing facility in the future."
Smith, Burton and three others defendants have had their nursing assistant licenses revoked by the state, said Parker.
Parker said defendant Jared Buckley was also found guilty by Henderson of misdemeanor elder abuse, and ordered to serve 150 hours of community service and placed on two years probation.

Two other defendants ­ Jennie Bido and Christine Boyd-Guerrero ­ were found guilty of failure to report elder abuse and received two years probation and were ordered to perform 100 hours of community service each.
The Valley View case, which stems from an incident in
November 2009, was called "cruel and shocking" by then-Attorney General Jerry Brown, who launched an investigation after being alerted by nursing home operator Horizon West Healthcare. The company immediately fired the six employees originally cited.
Prosecutors later dismissed charges against one of them, nursing assistant Kathleen Phillips.

Parker said Tuesday that prosecutors are satisfied the plea agreement underscores a message that, "Elder abuse in any form, including the lack of dignity and respect for elders, will not be tolerated."
The nursing assistants were accused of coating seven elderly patients from head to foot in ointment so they would be "slippery" for the next shift of workers, authorities said. The patients were not physically injured but they were unable to object to their treatment because of their medical and mental conditions, according to authorities.



SOURCE:   The Ukiah Daily Journal
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