March 28, 2013
A nurse’s aide in Lealman, Florida is behind bars this week after being accused of nursing home abuse at his former place of employment.
Per the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, 28-year-Joshua Baker was arrested on Weds., March 27, after allegedly sexually molesting an elderly resident at the Lealman Assisted Living facility. According to investigators, Baker was found by witnesses in only his underwear while on top of the victim. He immediately got up and stated that the incident “isn’t what it looks like.”
The matter was reported to the nursing home’s management as well as the local sheriff’s office. Once detectives interviewed Baker, he was placed in cuffs, arrested, and taken to the Pinellas County jail. He remains in custody on a $10,000 bond.
Baker faces a felony criminal charge of lewd and lascivious molestation of an elderly person. However, should the victim retain a Tampa nursing home abuse attorney, which is near Lealman, and file for damages, Baker may also face civil charges.
At this time, the detectives don’t think there were any other victims.
Elder and nursing home abuse continues to be a problem in the United States. According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, Bureau of Justice Statistics, there was a total of 5,961,568 elder and nursing home abuse cases in 2010 alone. These cases don’t represent the numerous incidents that were never reported.
Because of the devastating statistics, Florida, along with many other states, are trying to implement new laws which help protect the elderly from abuse and neglect.