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Texas Nursing Home Employees Arrested for Elder Abuse

State

Closed metal handcuffs on a gray background. | Image by rullala, Shutterstock

Two Southeast Texas nursing home employees have been arrested for elder abuse.

On October 7, the Texas City police department stated in a news release that both employees, Lisa Jo Cooper and Kecia Danielle Johnson, were charged with elderly abuse. In Texas, this is a second-degree felony.

A video shows the two employees of Solidago Health and Rehabilitation in Texas City kicking and hitting one of the 87-year-old residents, KHOU reported.

The resident was Cornelio Salinas. Lizandro Solis told KHOU that his grandfather had been telling the family about the abusive treatment for a few years. There was no proof until the surveillance video was released on October 2. The family installed the camera a year or two prior.

The video shows the resident being dragged back into his bed.

“We got a phone call that our grandpa was going to the hospital because he supposedly fell out the bed. We saw the bruising around his eyes, and he was in a neck brace, so we went back on the ring camera, and we saw what happened,” Lizandro told KHOU. “We were angry. We wanted to go do something, but what can you do?”

Lizandro added that the family would like the facility to be shut down and the employees charged.

“We don’t even know how long that has been happening or if anybody else is going through it,” he said.

Solidago Health and Rehabilitation is investigating; an investigation is also being conducted by the Texas Department of Health and Human Services and the Texas City police.

The facility issued a statement on October 5 to address the incident.

“We remain shocked and saddened that this troubling incident occurred at Solidago Health and Rehabilitation,” the statement reads. “Protecting the health and safety of all residents in our care remains a top priority, which is why we took prompt action to keep our residents safe.”

Explaining what steps had been taken by management, the statement read, “We reported the incident, as required, to the appropriate authorities and are continuing to cooperate in their ongoing investigation. Additionally, we have launched an internal investigation, and the employees involved in the incident were immediately suspended.”

The concluding statement expressed, “We have no tolerance for behavior that jeopardizes the health and safety of our residents, and all violations of our policies are addressed appropriately. Our thoughts remain with the resident and his family during this difficult time.”

The facility used to be known as The Resort at Texas City, according to ABC 13. Cornelio will be transferred to another facility, his family shared.

He was still in the hospital as of October 3, KHOU reported, with a few injuries and bruises.

Kathy Green, the director of AARP Texas, stated that Texas is one of the states with the highest number of nursing homes ranked at one or two stars. Green spoke to ABC 13 about the video.

“It’s horrible. It’s outrageous that somebody should be treated that way,” Green said.

Ware Wendell, the executive director of Texas Watch, a non-partisan citizen advocacy organization, claimed that Texas is a state that is dangerous for older adults.

“Many studies have shown that Texas has some of the most dangerous nursing homes,” Wendell told ABC 13.

Reasons Wendell gave for this included laws regarding the use of nursing home records as evidence, a lack of requiring liability insurance, and the number of for-profit nursing homes in the state.     

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Deedy
Deedy
3 months ago

This is so horrible. Praying that their Grandfather has a full and healthy recovery. As for those two ladies…..karma is a baaaaaddddd @#$%^. You can’t treat people bad and not pay for it.

Ellen Edwards
Ellen Edwards
3 months ago

Any person(s) in the facility who knew of this abuse and didn’t report it are as guilty as those who actually did the act of abuse. ALL persons involved must be held accountable.

Andrea
Andrea
3 months ago

This makes me sick! Some people like to have power and intimidate those who are weaker than them. Please listen to your loved ones is they complain. They are probably telling the truth!! Put a ring camera in the room. Best idea ever!

Anna
Anna
3 months ago

OMGosh this report hurts my heart. Texas is a great state, however, the fact that Texas ranks so low is absolutely heartbreaking at best! The weakest of weak areas the mercy of monsters! Why management doesn’t stay on top of their employees is ludicrous and criminal!! Families need to know without a doubt their mothers and fathers are being treated with kindness and love!! 😢

RiverKing
RiverKing
3 months ago

Surveillance cameras with 24×7 monitoring and recording should be required by the Texas Department of Health and Human Services in all nursing home facilities. Management claiming that they “didn’t know” is completely unacceptable.

Pap
Pap
3 months ago

The owners always come out with their typical lawyerly worded statements…which are useless. Amazing how they are always shocked. They obviously have no one trustworthy overseeing the employees.