After an elderly man was allegedly assaulted by the person hired to take care of him, he died at a local hospital in Oklahoma City. Michael Richard was 75 and had been relying on the services of a home care aide to assist with many basic tasks around the house.
When the victim was hospitalized, the authorities were notified and went to investigate. As reported by KOCO 5 News, in their police blotter blog, Police: Home health care aid [sic] arrested in death of elderly OKC man:
“According to police, officers responded on Dec. 14 to St. Anthony’s Hospital at 1000 N. Lee Avenue, regarding an assault. Officers learned that the victim, 75-year-old Michael Richard, had been assaulted by his home health care aid.
Police said the assault took place at the victim’s home in the 2500 block of Northwest 32nd Street. The caretaker was arrested on a warrant for abuse Wednesday in Perry.
Police said the victim died Thursday, and officers are investigating his death as a homicide.”
The home care aide in this case was not named as of yet, and was not yet charged with homicide. It’s not clear whether this individual had been hired independently or was working for an agency, though no reference to a home care agency was made during the initial reports.
Fraud and abuse are some of the most significant concerns people have regarding home care for themselves or an aging family member. While the vast majority of home care aides are kind, compassionate individuals who do this work out of a sincere desire to help those in need, there are some who don’t share the same sentiments. This is one of the primary reasons agencies encourage people to rely on their services, not because of money necessarily, but because they often conduct thorough interviews and more agencies across the country today are conducting background checks on all potential caregivers.
There was no immediate word on family for the elderly victim in this case or how long the home care provider had been working with him at his home. The case is still pending and the investigation is ongoing. Investigators also didn’t note publicly the extent of the injuries the elderly victim sustained nor what ultimately which injuries led directly to his death.
Updates will be made available as this case moves forward. The caretaker in this case is facing potential first-degree murder charges.
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