BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Seven nurses and nursing assistants accused of taking part in a “pattern of neglect” against a disabled resident at HighPointe on Michigan nursing home have pleaded guilty.
The former employees appeared in court Wednesday and pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of misdemeanor falsifying business documents. A judge sentenced all seven to 100 hours of community service and a one year conditional discharge.
Defense attorney Kevin Stadelmaier said, “it was certainly not all of their fault. I feel to a certain extent they were scapegoated here. But certainly mistakes were made. They’ve acknowledged those mistakes; they’ve taken responsibility for them.”
The seven were arrested in April and charged by the New York State Attorney General after a hidden camera investigation revealed they and other employees routinely ignored their duties and the need’s of a disabled resident.
The 56-year-old resident, who suffered from Huntington’s chorea, a neurological disease that left him non-ambulatory and bedridden, was completely dependent on nursing home staff.
The State Health Department will determine if the nurses and nursing assistants will be allowed to keep their licenses.