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Post date: November 21 2000

Nurse's Aide Arrested For Assaulting Infirm Patient At Queens Nursing Home

Attorney General Spitzer today announced that a nurse's aide has been arrested for assaulting an elderly male patient at a Queen nursing home in August.

Charmaine Ray, 45, of 91-30 191st Street in Hollis, will be arraigned later today in Queens Criminal Court. She has been charged with Endangering the Welfare of an Incompetent Person or Physically Disabled Person, Assault in the Third Degree, and Wilful Violation of Health Laws. If convicted, she faces up to one year in jail.

"This kind of violent crime against our elderly and most vulnerable residents will not be tolerated," said Spitzer. "We are committed to vigorously prosecuting those who abuse the very citizens whose care and well-being is entrusted to them."

On August 14th, Ray, while employed as an aide at Elmhurst Care Center, entered the room of a 94-year-old patient suffering from dementia, anemia, congestive heart failure, and atrial fibrillation. Although she was aware that the patient also had fragile skin (a disorder known as senile purpura that is characterized by bleeding beneath the skin), Ray grabbed the patient roughly by his upper right arm and left wrist. As a result, the patient suffered traumatic skin tears to his right arm and a cut to his left hand.

Spitzer thanked the State Health Department for referring the case to his office. He also thanked Elmhurst Care Center for its cooperation during the course of the investigation.

Ray worked at Elmhurst, located at 100-17 23rd Avenue in East Elmhurst, from February 18, 2000, until her termination shortly after the incident.

Special Assistant Attorney General Diane M. McFarlane, of the Attorney General's New York City Regional Office of the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, is prosecuting the case. All cases are handled under the direct supervision of Deputy Attorney General Jos? Maldonado.

The charges against Ray are accusations, and she is presumed innocent until proven guilty.