Three Nurses Prosecuted on Elder Abuse Charges Committed “For Laughs”

British Nurses On Trial For Elder Abuse – Reportedly Committed For Their Entertainment

elder abuseThree nurses who worked at a care facility in Lancaster, in the United Kingdom, have been taken to court on elder abuse charges. Reportedly, the three women abused patients “for laughs,” and the nursing facility covered up their abuse.

The jury was told that the women targeted 8 patients in particular for serious elder abuse because they suffered dementia, and would therefore not remember the incidents and be unable to report the abuse. The serious physical abuse went on for 17 months, according to court documents.

The patients were dragged from their beds, and had beanbags, used in physical therapy, thrown at their heads for entertainment. One man’s foot was stomped on, and another was tipped out of his wheelchair when he was unable to stand. One man was allegedly humiliated by having his nipples twisted.

Team leader Carol Ann Moore, 54, and nurses Katie Cairns, 27, and Gemma Pearson, 28, deny that they committed elder abuse.

Prosecutor Kathryn Johnson said: ‘The defendants and Smith abused elderly and vulnerable residents in their care in varying ways … The victims suffered from dementia and they mocked them, bullied them and on occasions assaulted them.”

Ms Johnson added: “When the residents reacted, the staff would laugh.”

Smith and Moore would say “they were doing it for their entertainment as they were bored.” If residents objected, they  would be subjected to it all the more.”

Facility cleaner Lisa Bateman reportedly saw Smith and another nurse in bed with an elderly patient, who was shouting and appeared distressed. She also reported that she saw Pearson tip a patient out of his wheelchair, and Cairns stomp on a patient’s foot to make him cry out in pain.

Ms. Bateman, along with receptionist Nichola Pallister, complained about the elder abuse in 2011. However, it took three more complaints from a whistleblower to bring the elder abuse charges to light, and then a 5-month long police investigation ensued.

The third week of the elder abuse trial is coming to a close, and week 4 will begin on November 11th.

3 Actions to Take Against Nursing Home Elder Abuse

There are many ways in which nursing homes can be held responsible for injuring others as a result of their negligenceabuseexploitation, false imprisonment, or violations of criminal statutes, as well as violations of regulations pertaining to their licensing, maintenance, and general operation.

An act of abuse, neglect or exploitation of an older person might give rise to one or all of the following types of proceedings:

1.     an investigation and finding by an adult protective services agency or the regulatory agency for nursing homes (in South Carolina it is the Department of Environmental Control);

2.     a civil cause of action for damages; and/or

3.     a criminal prosecution.

These three types of proceedings have different objectives: the objective of a protective services investigation is to provide immediate help and relief to the victim and prevent further harm; the civil action is to seek compensation for damages; and the criminal prosecution is when the state seeks to punish the harmful conduct.

The Attorneys at the Strom Law Firm Prosecute Elder Abuse

If your loved one has physically suffered, or died wrongfully, because an in-home caregiver or registered nurse in a nursing home has neglected the patient, you may have an elder abuse caseThe attorneys at the Strom Law Firm understand the sensitive nature of elder abuse cases, and will treat you with respect and compassion. It is important to fight felony elder abuse so you, your family, and others no longer suffer because of criminal behavior. We offer free, confidential consultations to discuss the facts of your case. Contact us today for help. 803.252.4800

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