Earlier this week police raided an Alzheimer’s personal care home in Jackson County, Georgia, arresting the owner and more than a dozen others before shutting the facility down. The raid, conducted by officials with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Revenue and local Commerce, GA police, was the result of a three-month investigation.
Officials say the raid involved serving 70 warrants on 21 people. GBI officials say though the facility, Alzheimer’s Care of Commerce, has enough room to house 50 patients, only 26 were present at the time of the raid. Investigators have revealed tragic stories about patients who were tied to their beds with sheets while others were forced to wear multiple diapers at one time so staff members could avoid having to change them frequently. Other tragic cases involve incidents where staff members physically assaulted patients or threw buckets of cold water on them.
Other problems at the facility include the fact that employees had prior felony convictions ranging from voluntary manslaughter to drug charges. Staff members without proper training or clearance were also allowed to administer medication. An inventory check revealed that some prescriptions had also gone missing, likely due to the lack of regulations regarding who was permitted to dispense the drugs.
The owner of the facility, 58-year-old Donna Wright, is now facing multiple criminal charges including abuse, neglect, financial exploitation and failure to report. More than a dozen others were arrested during the raid and GBI agents were said to have removed boxes full of information and computer hard drives to be used as evidence in pending criminal prosecutions.
Investigators from the state have inspected the facility previously and cited the home for problems relating to staff background checks. However, reports indicate that none of the previous inspections turned up any concerns about abuse. A GBI official says that is likely because nursing home abuse can be so difficult to detect, especially in a case like this where residents with severe Alzheimer’s often have trouble communicating.
Patients and their families are now scrambling to find a new place to stay. The condition of most of the residents of the facility is such that they need constant care, something there families hope to find in a safe place. It can be hard to know who to entrust with the care of an elderly loved one and, if true, the allegations against the facility are deeply disturbing.
If you or someone you know have been injured due to nursing home abuse or neglect and would like to discuss your case with an attorney, please contact the Georgia catastrophic injury attorneys at Pope McGlamry P.C. today to schedule a free consultation.
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