Minneapolis Dementia Patient Raped by Nursing Home Employee
Written by NHAbuseGuide on September 24, 2015
An employee of the Walker Methodist Health Center, a nursing home facility for the elderly, pled guilty to the rape of an eighty-three year old female patient at the facility. The woman, who suffers from both Alzheimer’s disease and a severe degree of dementia, lacked the cognitive and linguistic capacity to communicate the rape to police officials due to her conditions, and as such, the event was only reported in light of another staff member witnessing the rape as it occurred.
George Kpingbah, seventy-seven years old and from Brooklyn Center, pled guilty to the rape, was formerly employed at Walker Methodist as a nursing attendant. The rape stems from an incident in which a fellow nurse observed Kpingbah having sex with the elderly patient in her bedroom at the facility. Immediately upon discovery, Kpingbah backed away from the patient and was removed from the facility, while shortly thereafter arrested by police under felony charges of criminal sexual conduct.
With the guilty plea, Kpingbah now stands subject to a potential sentence of four years of incarceration, pending the decision of a Hennepin County District Court judge on November 12th, 2015. In his guilty plea, Kpingbah admitted only to a one-time sex act with the patient, which entailed full sexual intercourse until discovered by witnesses. However, family members of the victim employed a unique civil settlement against Kpingbah to ensure that future such incidents are strongly discouraged by way of obtaining a $15 million settlement to be paid to the victim’s estate, should Kpingbah re-offend in any case involving the abuse or exploitation of an elderly or vulnerable person, whether sexually or otherwise.
While Minnesota nursing home rape cases are rare, instances like the one involving Kpingbah are not unfortunately not unprecedented, with at least 9 incidents of a sexual nature involving staff and nursing home patients investigated in Minnesota over a three-year period. Moreover, other instances of nursing home abuse are on the rise in the state, with allegations of mistreatment of patients by nursing home staff members doubling over a three-year period since 2010, with a total of 553 incidents being called into question. Accordingly, the Minnesota Department of Health investigates thoroughly all nursing home abuse related complaints filed by citizens. In the case of Kpingbah, officials conducted an investigation as well, but ultimately, find that the criminal conduct of Kpingbah was his responsibility alone, while declining to find Walker Methodist liable for violations of state nursing home ethics or regulations violations.
In any instance of suspected sexual abuse in a nursing home setting, it is imperative that witnesses report suspected conduct to multiple entities, including state officials, the nursing home itself, police, and consult with an attorney who address the concerns of those family members or loved one seeking to protect their elderly relatives or friends.