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For Immediate Release
December 15, 2003
Media Contact: 410-576-6357

CAREGIVER CHARGED WITH NEGLECT AND RECKLESS ENDANGERMENT IN SCALDING INCIDENT

Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr., announced today that a Prince George’s County resident has been charged with neglect and reckless endangerment of a developmentally disabled adult.Haja Bah, 25, of Landover, Maryland, was charged by the Grand Jury for Worcester County in a three-count criminal information: neglect of a vulnerable adult in the first degree, neglect of a vulnerable adult in the second degree, and reckless endangerment.

On September 5, 2003, Bah was a caregiver for four individuals who, due to their developmental disabilities, were dependent on their caregivers for all of their activities of daily living. Bah was caring for one of the individuals while at a rental house in Ocean City, Maryland. Bah is alleged to have placed the victim in a bathtub, turned on the water and then left the bathroom. While she was gone, the water temperature increased to the point where the victim received second-degree burns on 40 percent of her body.

The case is being prosecuted by the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit of the Maryland Attorney General’s Office, which has authority to investigate and prosecute abuse or neglect of vulnerable adults, in conjunction with the Worcester County State’s Attorney’s Office.

A criminal information is only an accusation and all persons are presumed innocent unless proven guilty. A charge of neglect of a vulnerable adult in the first degree is a felony punishable by a maximum sentence of 10 years in jail and fine of $10,000. Neglect of a vulnerable adult in the second degree is a misdemeanor punishable by a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $5,000 fine, or both, on each count. Reckless endangerment is a misdemeanor punishable by a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $5,000 fine, or both, on each count.

A trial date has not been set.

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