Complaint alleges East Chicago nursing home resident assaulted fellow resident

Complaint alleges East Chicago nursing home resident assaulted fellow resident

EAST CHICAGO, Ind. (CBS) – A complaint was filed against an East Chicago, Indiana, nursing home and a sex offender living there.

The complaint alleged the 90-year-old man sexually assaulted a fellow resident in the nursing home's care. CBS 2's Suzanne Le Mignot had the latest on the story first seen on 2.

The victim's granddaughter, who has the power of attorney for the dementia patient, wants everyone to know what happened with the hope of creating systemic change.

Attorneys for Ruth Reed filed the complaint in Lake County Circuit Court in Indiana. It alleges Gerald McBride sexually assaulted Reed by touching her breast while in her room at Harbor Health & Rehab in East Chicago on Sept. 2.

McBride, a resident at the facility, is a registered sex offender. In 2008, he was convicted of child molestation and sentenced to 10 years behind bars. CBS 2 is naming McBride because he's named in the complaint. He has not yet been arrested or charged in the case.

"It is untenable to me that this man, this assailant, has still not been arrested," said attorney Cannon Lambert Sr.

East Chicago police said they need to interview more witnesses who have come forward as their investigation continues.

McBride admitted to police he sexually assaulted Reed, 96. He's still living at the facility.

"What's particularly concerning to us is we don't understand how the facility has never notified any of its residents, as we understand it, of the existence of a sexual predator amongst them," Lambert said.

Gloriatte Evans-Dumas, Reed's granddaughter, told CBS 2 she had to take her grandmother to the emergency room to get an examination after the assault.

CBS 2 asked Harbor Health & Rehab if they had a policy to alert residents and staff that a sex offender is living on the premises and if there was a comprehensive care plan in place for McBride. Indiana law requires such a plan for sexually violent predators. The facility never directly responded to those questions but said in a statement, "We promptly reported the incident to state and local authorities in full compliance with Indiana regulations, initiating a comprehensive investigation."

Indiana law does not require facilities to tell residents if there is a sex offender living among them.

"I want the laws changed, immediately!" Evans-Dumas said.

Harbor Health & Rehab maintains a one-star overall rating on Medicare's website. Records uncovered by CBS 2 Investigators show the facility has been fined four times by the federal government in just the past three years for nearly $60,000.

A February 2023 complaint investigation from the Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services found the facility failed to:

  • Notify the family of a patient who had fallen.
  • Follow up with a vital sign assessment 72 hours post-fall for two residents.
  • Manage a resident's medication.
  • Develop a baseline care plan for a resident within 48 hours of admission.
  • And ensure the environment was clean and in good repair for residents.

CBS 2 asked Harbor Health & Rehab what was being done to keep people safe in the facility with McBride still living there, but they have not responded.

As for the complaint investigation, the facility provided a plan of correction to address the issues.

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