Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Channel 3: Sex abuse in nursing homes

Investigator Exclusive: Nursing home sex abuse unreported, unprosecuted

CLEVELAND -- The state Attorney General's Office received 158 complaints of sexual violence against elderly and disabled residents of long-term care facilities in Northeast Ohio since January 2006, but only two of those cases ended with a conviction, a Channel 3 News investigation found.

Most of the complaints were forwarded by the Ohio Department of Health, which received 324 complaints statewide, alleging rape and other sexual abuse of residents in nursing homes, residential care facilities and assisted living facilities.

Two other complaints came from local law enforcement in a seven-county region that includes Cleveland, Akron and Lorain.

Attorney General Richard Cordray said such cases are "hard to prosecute" because victims of sexual abuse in long-term care cannot always recall what happened to them.

"It's hard to get victims who can hold up on the stand," Cordray said. "It's hard to verify when some of the elderly victims (are abused because) their memories aren't good."

Click here to read the entire piece, including comments from Megan O'Bryan and Allison Rerko (Fairview's SANE Coordinator).

To watch the video that aired on Monday night's broadcast, click here.

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