When you think of nursing home residents, you most likely think of wheel chair bound and bed ridden elderly that need constant care. Nursing homes and long-term care facilities are meant to be safe places for the elderly and disabled to live under the protection of health care professionals. Unfortunately, due to budget cuts, under-staffing, and bad hires, nursing homes can be a terrifying place for often helpless elderly residents. In one Texas nursing home, the residents have more to fear. A population of criminals and sex offenders outnumber the elderly residents.
Criminals Outnumber Elderly Residents in Texas Nursing Home
According to Fox 4 News in Fort Worth, Texas, the Lake Worth Nursing Home houses about 50 registered sex offenders, convicted felons, and prison parolees, some labeled violent offenders by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ). “The reason for the high concentration in that facility is the facility’s willingness to take offenders on supervision,” said Jason Clark, spokesperson for the TDCJ. The state does not limit the number of criminals allowed to live in these facilities and they can stay on the government’s expense as long as the home confirms that it is medically necessary.
Residents of the community neighboring the facility are concerned for their safety, having so many convicted offenders living in one place and wandering around the neighborhood freely. Clark does not believe that this is a safety concern, “We have not had any major incidents there at that nursing home,” he told Fox 4. However, police reports from the Lake Worth Police Department show complaints of death threats, violent outbursts and child pornography at the nursing home.
Legally the nursing home is not breaking any laws by allowing the offenders to live in the facility. In fact they have received a 5-star rating. But with fully mobile offenders who have records including robbery, forgery, drugs, rape and other violent crimes, how are the elderly residents supposed to feel safe. As nursing home abuse lawyers, we strongly recommend visiting all facilities before you decide to place a loved one into a nursing home. Pay attention to the facility conditions, staff, neighboring area around the home and the other residents.
Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers in New Jersey and Philadelphia
If your loved one is currently a resident of a nursing home or care facility and you are worried that the care they are receiving is negligent, abusive, or inadequate, contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation. You may also call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.