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Psychiatric patient drops sexual assault charges She had accused hospital worker WEST COLUMBIA


County prosecutors dropped charges against a man accused of sexually assaulting a patient at the Howard County General Hospital's psychiatric ward after the patient refused to cooperate in the case.

Jeffrey Richard Hensen, 23, of Sykesville, was accused of fondling the woman's breasts and touching her genital area in June 1991, court records say.

Senior Assistant State's Attorney Kate O'Donnell said after a brief hearing in Howard Circuit Court yesterday that the woman wanted the prosecution to drop the charges against Mr. Hensen.

The woman suffers multiple personality disorder and post-traumatic stress syndrome, stemming from a history of sexual and physical abuse as a child, according to records.

She was admitted to the psychiatric ward after an attempted aspirin overdose, court records state.

Mr. Hensen, of the 600 block of Old Liberty Road, was to stand trial Aug. 11 for two counts of second-degree sexual offense and one count each of third-degree sexual offense, fourth-degree sexual assault, assault and battery.

He worked as an emergency room technician at the hospital, but had been temporarily assigned to the psychiatric ward at the time of the alleged incident, records say.

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