Attorney General Cuomo Announces Arrest Of Buffalo Nurse Aide For Stomping On An 84 Year-old Resident
BUFFALO, N.Y.(September 15, 2008) - Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the arrest of a certified nurse aide who stomped on an 84 year-old female resident of Kaleida Health Deaconess Skilled Nursing Facility while the resident was lying in the fetal position.
Certified Nurse Aide Shavon Morris, 21, of Goulding Ave, Buffalo, was charged with endangering the welfare of an incompetent or physically disabled person and wilful violation of health laws, both misdemeanors, for allegedly stomping on the resident during a physical confrontation. The defendant stomped on the resident’s stomach and leg area while the resident was on the ground, after a dispute involving trays on a dinner cart. The elderly woman, who suffers from dementia, did not sustain an injury. According to a witness account filed with the court, the defendant admitted, “If someone kicks me, I’ll kick them back.”
“It is absolutely unacceptable for a care professional to resort to physical violence in any form, especially against a patient,” said Attorney General Cuomo. “My office will continue to aggressively pursue those who victimize New York’s most vulnerable because it is imperative to be able to trust those who take care of our loved ones.”
Morris was arraigned in Buffalo City Court by Judge Betty Calvo-Torres and pleaded not guilty. She is due back in court October 15. If convicted of the charges against her, Morris faces up to one year in jail and a $2,000 fine. She is no longer employed by Kaleida Health Deaconess Skilled Nursing Facility.
The case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant Attorney General Thomas N. Schleif of the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit Buffalo Regional Office. Senior Special Investigator Thomas P. Kenney conducted the investigation of the case.
The charges against the defendant are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty.
The case is one of several being announced today as part of the opening of the Attorney General’s new Western New York Regional Office at Main Place Tower, 350 Main Street in Buffalo. The Western New York Regional Office is the largest of the Attorney General’s 13 regional offices, and serves the counties of Erie, Niagara, Chautauqua, Genesee, Wyoming, Alleghany, Cattaraugus, and Orleans. Home to approximately 100 employees, last year it opened more than 5,000 cases covering a myriad of legal matters from consumer protection to the defense of the state. The office serves as a ‘front door’ to the Office of the Attorney General for the people of Western New York.