Articles Posted in Sex offenders and parolees in nursing homes

The Chicago Tribune is reporting that the family of a disabled woman has filed a nursing home negligence lawsuit against the Fox River Pavilion nursing home in Aurora, Illinois. The lawsuit also includes a nursing home resident who is alleged to have sexually assaulted the disabled victim. The nursing home lawsuit alleges that the 39 year old aggressor sexually assaulted and beat the victim in his room at the Aurora nursing home. This patient had been arrested multiple times and is suffering from bipolar disorder. The nursing home lawsuit claims that the staff should have more closely monitored this aggressor and failed to treat his anti-social behavior. It describes the victim as “bruised, battered and bloodied.” The man is now being held in jail on eight counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault and battery. The Fox River Pavilion has been threatened by state and federal officials that their funding may be terminated.

This is a grave example of the violence that keeps occurring in Illinois nursing homes when older residents are mixed with those younger residents suffering from mental illness. Many times the nursing home staff does not have the proper training or resources to specifically care for the growing needs of the mentally ill population. Currently, the Illinois nursing home task force is working to create a better system for those people living in nursing homes with severe mental illness. If your loved one is experiencing difficulties at a mixed nursing home please consult a Chicago nursing home lawyer. To read more about this specific case, please click the link.

As the Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog reported, Somerset Place nursing home on the north side of Chicago has received a number of IDPH violations for repeated acts of violence and nursing home abuse and neglect that have compromised the safety of its residents. The nursing home was also the subject of several articles in the Chicago Tribune that highlighted the nursing home’s problems and the Uptown community’s concern. On Friday, federal health care officials announced that they would cut funding for the troubled nursing home. This is the first time in four years that the federal government has cut funding for a nursing home in Chicago.

All of the nursing home’s 300 residents have a primary diagnosis of mental illness, and according to the Tribune 66 of these residents had criminal backgrounds. Staff members told the Tribune that insufficient staffing and training for direct care workers has created a chaotic environment where staff cannot properly supervise residents, many of whom need constant supervision. Without staffing and training, nursing home staff cannot properly supervise residents, and this leads to physical and sexual violence among residents.

According to the report, the Chicago nursing home will continue to receive Medicaid funding for 30 days, and the home has filed an emergency lawsuit to stop the CMS from pulling funding. The state health department will now look to move these residents to other Chicago nursing homes. Read full coverage of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Service’s decision to cut funding for Somerset Place in Chicago.

As Chicago nursing home attorneys, we have represented hundreds of victims of nursing home abuse and neglect and witnessed many instances of sexual abuse in Illinois nursing homes. Today, the Chicago Tribune reports on their latest investigation into poor care in Chicago nursing home, focusing on sexual assault and abuse in nursing homes throughout the city.

Citing incidents at such nursing homes as Rainbow Beach Care Center and All Faith Pavilion on the South Side, and Sheridan Shores Care & Rehabilitation Center, Warren Park Health & Living Center and Somerset Place on the North Side, the investigation reveals the epidemic of sexual violence, along with the fact that little is being done to stop it. According to the Tribune’s investigation, 86 cases were investigated, but only one arrest was made.

Throughout Chicago, nursing home owners, such as Eric Rothner (who has ownership in Rainbow Beach, Sheridan Shores and Somerset Place), operate their homes at below-average staffing levels. This creates an environment where even the most well-intentioned direct care staff cannot deliver the proper care and attention that the residents need and deserve. In addition to low staffing levels, Chicago nursing homes often mix populations of elderly residents with younger, mentally-ill residents. Sometimes, these psychiatric residents have histories of violent crime. This creates an unsafe environment for more vulnerable residents, because nursing homes do not have the staff to properly monitor psychiatric residents.

Authorities swept two Chicago-area nursing homes for people with outstanding arrest warrants. The sweeps identified 20 residents with warrants ranging from domestic battery to assault. The raids were initiated by Attorney General Lisa Madigan who stated that Illinois is “working to keep Illinois nursing homes safe and not safe houses for fugitives.” Eight people were arrested on the warrants. The team searched the Rainbow Beach Care Center and the Kenwood Healthcare Center. They are both located on the South Side of Chicago. State records show that both facilities have large number of felons who create frequent police reports. Rainbow Beach had 18 felons out of a total of 193 residents and 17 reports of assaults or batteries. Kenwood has 95 felons living amongst 172 residents and has had 30 police reports of assaults or batteries. Madigan is upset that background check laws are not being complied with. She hopes that people will follow the legislation to avoid nursing home abuse. To learn more about the recent raids, check out the link.

The Chicago Tribune‘s Compromised Care series has sparked new interest in ways the state could improve care for people who are severely mentally ill. The Illinois Psychiatric Society believes that Illinois should overhaul how it provides care for people who are severely mentally ill by redirecting its funding to programs that are proved to help. They have recommended many changes. This includes allocating the vast majority of state and federal funds to agencies that provide community-based care. The Illinois Department of Mental Health must certify more community mental health centers. It is important that funding for treating the severely mentally ill is being well-spent. Individuals who have a violent criminal history and who are severely mentally ill should be housed in an appropriate setting that keeps the community and the individual safe. To read more about the steps to help protect the mentally ill residents living in Illinois nursing homes, please click the link.

Federal, state and county officials swept two Chicago-area nursing homes for felons with outstanding arrest warrants and identified 18 residents wanted on charges ranging from disorderly conduct to burglary to assault. The early morning raids were initiated by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan in response to Chicago tribune reports about Illinois nursing facilities that house high numbers of felons and sex offenders. Five people were arrested, including a sex offender wanted in another state. Three residents were too sick to be taken into custody. The team found nine felons when it swept Columbus Park Nursing & Rehabilitation Center on Chicago’s West Side. They found nine residents with warrants at Heather Health Center in Harvey. The team also did a sweep at Sumerset Place. The number of felons known to be living in Illinois nursing homes has grown as the state increasingly relies on the facilities to house younger psychiatric patients. A spokesman for the Columbus Park facility stated that the majority of the outstanding warrants were for out-of-state crimes and would not surface during a background check. Heather Health Center was recently given an “average” rating for the home despite the fact that there were 30 felons living in the nursing home. To read more about the Illinois nursing home raids, please click the link.

Officials swept two Chicago-area nursing homes for felons with outstanding arrest warrants and identified 18 residents wanted on charges ranging from disorderly conduct to burglary to assault. The raids involved 20 federal marshals and Cook County sheriff’s police were initiated by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan. Five people were arrested, including a sex offender wanted in another state for failing to register. In three cases, the residents were too sick to be taken into custody, and the other warrants were not immediately enforceable because they were issued in other jurisdictions. Authorities examined records for Somerset Place on the North Side and discovered three residents with outstanding warrants. The number of felons known to be living in Illinois nursing homes has grown as the state increasingly relied on nursing homes to house younger psychiatric patients. Many of these patients have criminal records. To read the full sweep story, please click the link.

Crimes are being committed by residents of Chicago nursing homes throughout the Uptown and Edgewater neighborhoods. Illinois is a unique state because it allows nursing homes to house younger adults with mental illness patients including several thousand felons. The Chicago lakefront communities of Uptown and Edgewater contain the state’s densest concentration of mentally ill and criminal nursing home residents. In a 2-square-mile section of the neighborhoods, 11 facilities housed 318 convicted felons and 1,350 people with mental illness. Also most of these nursing homes have substandard nursing staff levels and care. This creates a great deal of both nursing home negligence and abuse. To read more about how Chicago nursing homes house mentally ill patients, please click the link.

Contrary to a nursing home’s assurance that a registered sex offender presented no recent problems, a newly obtained government report and interviews show that the man allegedly groped a mentally impaired woman at the facility. According to Department of Public Health, the Asta Care Center of Toluca in central Illinois failed to fully investigate the incident, implement an appropriate care plan for the sexual predator, or properly monitor him to protect others. Even the nursing home’s attorney acknowledged to the Chicago Tribune that administrators erred in not interviewing the female about the alleged sexual abuse, as is required by law. The perpetrator is alleged to have molested female residents in two prior incidents at the Asta Toluca nursing home and their sister facility in Bloomington. The perpetrator was moved back to the Toluca this summer and given a state assessment calling him a “high risk” of danger to others. Failing to monitor residents is being a common form of nursing home negligence in Illinois. To read more about the compromised care investigation, please click the link.

Under Illinois law, families researching nursing homes are directed to search a state police Web site for critical information about sex offenders living in the nursing home. However, with only 59 of the 192 sex offenders in Illinois nursing homes listed on that registry, the research may be frivolous. The Chicago Tribune reported that the shortfall is most visible in Chicago nursing homes where fewer than one in five sex offenders in nursing homes were posted on the police Web site. The problem occurs because of a specific gap in the law. Although some sex offenders can remain dangerous for decades if unmonitored and untreated, many are no longer required to register with police if their convictions or final parole dates occurred more than 10 years ago. Also, state investigators have documented more than a dozen instances since 2007 in which nursing homes have failed to notify local law enforcement that they housed a convicted sex offender as required by law, or failed to implement care plans to monitor and treat sex offenders inside the facilities. The greatest problem occurs when the sex offenders physically abuse the nursing home residents. Last year, state health inspectors cited the Asta Care Center of Elgin for failing to inform authorities of a sexual predator. An 80 year old sex offender was not closely monitored in Asta Care Center in Bloomington. To read more about sex offenders in nursing homes, please click the link.

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