Nursing Home Evicted Woman After She Claimed an Employee Raped Her

Posted on behalf of Jeff Pitman on December 11, 2023 in Nursing Home Abuse
Updated on April 24, 2024

close-up of someone in a wheelchair - face not shownAn elderly female resident at an Iowa nursing home was abruptly evicted and dumped at a homeless shelter after she reported an employee there had raped her.

According to state inspectors, the woman was living at Correctionville Specialty Care in Woodbury County at the time she was attacked. Her alleged male attacker was a certified nurse aide working at the facility.

The Victim’s Account of the Attack

The alleged victim, who reportedly does not have cognitive issues, was residing at the facility due to various medical issues, including high blood pressure and anxiety. The woman also suffers from lung cancer, heart failure and diabetes. According to notes in her medical records at the facility, the woman was in pain most of the time as a result of these medical issues.

On November 1, 2023, the woman was interviewed by the Woodbury County Sheriff’s Office about her allegations of sexual abuse. The woman, who is wheelchair-bound, commented on her alleged attacker, saying that he initially seemed nice and that she felt safe with him. She said that on occasions, he even bought her various small items, such as cigarettes, soda pop, and other food snacks. She said a dietary aide there also purchased small items for her. In return, the woman transferred small amounts of cash to both individuals to pay for those items.

According to a recent article, the woman described two separate incidents where the male nurse aide kissed her, once on her feet and on another day, on the back of her neck.

In October 2023, the woman says she encountered this same aide when she went outside the facility for a smoke. He offered to let her smoke in his car, which was near a group of trees on the property by the parking lot. She agreed and the nurse aide pushed her wheelchair to his car.

The attack happened once she was inside the aide’s car. He grabbed her by her hair and the back of her neck and forced her to perform oral sex on him. She said he appeared to be recording the incident.

Afterward, the woman said she went back to her room without speaking to anyone and never discussed the incident with the aide.

Care Initiatives Response

Care Initiatives of West Des Moines is the company that owns and operates Correctionville Specialty Care, along with about 40-plus other facilities throughout the state. Following the investigation, they issued a written statement about the incident to say, among other things, that they were cooperating with local law enforcement and the Department of Inspection, Appeals and Licensing (DIAL).

As part of their written statement, Care Initiatives said, “…we launched an extensive internal investigation into this matter and have taken immediate action to ensure the safety of our residents. Involved parties are no longer employed by Care Initiatives.”

Despite this statement, however, the accused aide claims he continued working at other sister facilities the company owns and operates.

What Happened After the Victim Reported the Incident?

The accused nurse aide denied the woman’s claims of any such relationship or incident. He said he was initially suspended from the Correctionville facility because he had accepted several cash transfers from the woman.

During his interview with state inspectors, the aide described three separate facilities where he worked right after he was suspended from Correctionville. Corporate time sheets confirmed this claim, verifying the aide worked at various Care Initiative facilities immediately after the alleged attack at Correctionville.

Just hours after reporting the alleged rape to administrators, the female resident was informed she had to leave the facility. A nurse aide told state inspectors that the facility’s administrator shouted at the woman, giving her only 30 minutes to pack her things. She was evicted the following day and dropped off at a homeless shelter without her medical records. This action appears to be a direct retaliation to her rape allegations.

Allegations Against the Facility

As a result of their investigation into this incident, DIAL has issued multiple citations against Correctionville and Care Initiatives, which include:

  • Failing to properly investigate or report the victim’s allegations of rape to the state.
  • Allowing the alleged perpetrator to work in other care facilities they owned, exposing more vulnerable individuals to potential abuse.
  • Allegedly retaliating against another worker at Correctionville who challenged the nursing home’s administrator about reporting the rape.
  • Retaliating against the victim for reporting the rape by evicting her and dropping her off at a homeless shelter

The state, recognizing the severity of these issues, proposed $45,500 in fines. However, these fines are currently pending while the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services considers the possibilitiy of imposing other federal penalties. The status of any potential criminal charges remains unclear.

In the Aftermath

John Hale, an advocate for seniors in Iowa, expressed he found the nursing home’s handling of this incident sickening. He says this situation should be a wake-up call for state authorities that urgent action to address such cruelty is needed.

Care Initiatives is under scrutiny for its failure to adequately investigate and report the rape allegation, along with the mistreatment of the resident who made the complaint. The fines proposed by the state reflect the gravity of the violations.

Before this incident, Correctionville already had a troubling history of regulatory issues. They currently have a one-star rating (from one to five, with one being the lowest) from CMS for overall quality and inspection results. This incident also shows a repeating pattern in the facility’s failure to provide adequate supervision and ability to protect residents from abuse.

Call PKSD If You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect

At PKSD, we have a legal team that is deeply dedicated to protecting vulnerable residents who are often unable to adequately protect themselves. We have the staff and resources to thorougly investigate your concerns and determine whether you may be able to seek compensation for damages.

Call to request a free case review 24/7. Our experienced nursing home abuse lawyers are prepared to discuss your situation and determine your potential for taking legal action. Our firm has a history of proven results, and we accept cases in Iowa, Wisconsin and New Mexico. If we represent you, there are no upfront costs or fees to pay. We only get paid if you do.

Experienced Lawyers. Millions Recovered.  414-333-3333

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