Nursing Home Ant Attack: Three Ex-Employees Sentenced for Attempted Elder Abuse

Macro of ant (Red Ant or Green Tree Ant) biting on the human skin for self-defense or self-protection from human

Three former employees of a nursing home in Cherokee County, Alabama were charged with allowing an elderly bedridden patient to be bitten approximately 100 times by ants over a period of 11 hours in September of 2016.

Each pleaded guilty in Cherokee County Circuit Court to one count of attempted elder abuse.

Sandra Michele Curry—licensed practical nurse, and certified nursing assistants Kacey Minerva Allen and Shawna Rogers, were each sentenced to 2 years imprisonment. The imprisonment was suspended, and each was instead put on three years of probation.  They are all banned from working in health care facilities, and Curry had her nursing license revoked.

On the night of September 3rd, at Cherokee County Health and Rehabilitation Center in Centre, the resident was left unattended during the ant attack, despite being under the care of Curry, Allen and Rogers.

According to Attorney General Steve Marshall, “They all charted that they had entered the room numerous times throughout the night. A review of the surveillance video showed none of the three entered the room for approximately 11 hours. When the resident was checked on it was discovered that she had suffered approximately 100 ant bites.”

Marshall applauded Cherokee County Health and Rehabilitation Center officials for their “quick reporting of the incident.”

“Alabama law recognizes that the care of those who are vulnerable is a serious responsibility, and those who are entrusted with this charge have a legal obligation to properly fulfill their duties,” Marshall said. “These defendants not only failed to provide adequate care, but they were shown to have lied about their negligence that resulted in harm and injury to a nursing home patient.”

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