Nursing home fails to report patient complaint of sexual assault to police orderly is charged; Woman sent to hospital three days after complaint


Workers at a North Baltimore nursing home failed to call police after an elderly patient reported being sexually assaulted by an orderly, and authorities said yesterday that the care center might be investigated.

Police said the woman reported being attacked on May 19 at the Alice Manor Nursing Home. She was told to talk with a psychiatrist and was sent to a rape counseling center before she was treated at a hospital three days later.

Doctors at Liberty Medical Center called police after they found evidence that a sexual assault had occurred, a Police Department spokesman said.

Not reporting a possible crime "is against the law," said the spokesman, Sgt. Mark E. Howe. "They are required to notify the police immediately. The matter is under investigation at this time."

Marianne Athen, a vice president with El Shaddai Health Care Co., which manages the nursing home in the 2000 block of Rockrose Ave., said, "The nursing home feels that they took the measures that were appropriate."

Police arrested Ernest Tyrone Moore, 55, of the 300 block of Edsdale Road Tuesday and charged him with a first-degree sex offense and two counts of assault.

Moore was being held without bail yesterday at the Central Booking and Intake Center. Athen said he had been fired since the alleged attack for sleeping on the job.

"Alice Manor monitors its hiring of all employees and does a criminal background check on all employees," Athen said. "This employee's check comes back clean." She said he had been hired recently.

A check of court records showed that Moore has been arrested five times since the early 1990s on misdemeanor charges of assault and theft but never convicted.

Police said detectives from the sex offense unit were called to Liberty Medical Center May 22, when they interviewed the woman and obtained an arrest warrant for the suspect.

Howe said the woman, who is unable to move from her bed, reported being attacked during the night of May 19. Nursing home officials said they were notified on May 20.

Athen said that nursing home workers notified a doctor and that a psychiatrist who was called in May 21 set up a hospital appointment for the next day.

Athen said managers notified state health workers, who inspect nursing homes, and the woman's family members shortly after being told of the attack.

"The police were not notified by us," Athen said, adding that family members told nursing home officials that the woman, whose age was not disclosed, had made rape allegations in the past that apparently were not true.

Police and nursing home officials did not release the woman's name, and her family could not be reached for comment.

Pub Date: 5/30/98

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