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For Immediate Release
March 10, 2005
Media Contact:
Kevin Enright 410-576-6357

BALTIMORE COUNTY CAREGIVER PLEADS GUILTY TO NEGLECTING A VULNERABLE ADULT

Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that Thomasina Matthews, a caregiver at Progress Unlimited, Inc. in Baltimore County pled guilty to one count of neglect of a vulnerable adult for leaving a developmentally disabled adult alone and unattended for several hours.

Judge John Turnbull, II, of the Circuit Court for Baltimore County sentenced Matthews to three years supervised probation and ordered the Defendant to refrain from providing care to vulnerable individuals during her probation period. Judge Turnbull also ordered Matthews to perform 120 hours of community service.

Matthews, 24, of the 3600 block of Eldorado Avenue in Baltimore City, was a paid caregiver for a developmentally disabled woman. According to the Statement of Facts, on December 23, 2003 and while she was employed by Progress Unlimited, Matthews was the awake overnight caregiver for Carole B., who was developmentally disable and suffered from schizophrenia, episodic, and was never to be left alone. At approximately 1:00 a.m. that morning, Carole awoke and found herself alone in the house. She called another caregiver at Progress Unlimited who immediately went to be with Carole, arriving by 1:15 a.m.. Matthews did not return to the home until 4:00 a.m. She did not call anyone to come and cover for her and did not call any of the emergency numbers posted by Progress Unlimited. Matthews was aware that Carole could not be left alone.

This case was prosecuted by Attorney General Curran’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, which has jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute abuse or neglect of vulnerable adults in facilities that receive Medicaid funds.


 

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