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For Immediate Release
April 14, 2004
Media Contact:
Kevin Enright 410-576-6357

CARE PROVIDER PLEADS GUILTY TO NEGLECT

Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that Lafenus Donnell Taylor, a former respite care provider for and employee of The Chimes, Inc., pleaded guilty to neglecting a vulnerable adult in connection with a series of occasions when he failed to properly supervise a developmentally disabled adult in his care.

Taylor, 35, of the 3000 block of Spaulding Avenue in Baltimore City, pleaded guilty to one count of neglect of a vulnerable adult, and was sentenced by the Honorable John M. Glynn to a three year suspended sentence and three years of supervised probation. The judge also prohibited Taylor from working as a caregiver in the healthcare field during the term of probation.

According to the statement of facts presented by the State, the victim, who is 39 years old, had lived with his family for 37 years, until his parents became too frail to care for him. At that point, they were referred to The Chimes, a provider of services to the developmentally disabled, and The Chimes hired the defendant to care for the victim in the defendant’s home. The victim in the case was mentally disabled, schizophrenic, and autistic, and experienced numerous physical problems as well.

As his respite care provider, Taylor was required to make sure that either he or another trained caregiver was with the victim at all times. However, Taylor worked full time for the Chimes coordinating care of Chimes clients during the same time period that he was providing respite care to the victim. Investigation by the State revealed that on January 22, 2003, as well as on other occasions, Taylor left the victim alone at home with his roommate, who was completely untrained and lacked any experience as a caregiver, while Taylor was out performing unrelated duties for The Chimes.

This case was prosecuted by the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, which has authority to prosecute abuse and neglect of vulnerable adults in Medicaid-funded facilities.

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