Arizona nurse charged with sexual assault of patient in vegetative state

Mackenzie Bean - Print  | 

A nurse at a Phoenix-based Hacienda HealthCare facility was arrested Jan. 22 for allegedly raping and impregnating a patient in a vegetative state, according to the Arizona Republic.

Police charged 36-year-old Nathan Sutherland with sexual assault and abuse to a vulnerable adult. He was taken into custody after a DNA sample matched one taken from the 29-year-old victim's baby.

Mr. Sutherland is a licensed practical nurse who joined Hacienda HealthCare in 2011. He was primarily responsible for caring for the patient involved in the alleged assault.

Phoenix police Sgt. Tommy Thompson said investigators are still trying to determine whether other patients were assaulted at the care facility, according to Arizona Republic. Hacienda HealthCare also hired a former attorney to investigate the alleged assault and the facility's security practices.

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