Georgia nursing home owner facing cruelty charges after staff quits, patients left unattended

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The owner of Trenton, Ga.-based Woodhaven Senior Living is facing cruelty charges after patients were found in temperatures higher than 90 degrees June 14, with just one staff member to care for all of them, reports WTVC.

Kent Allen Womack, 55, was arrested June 14 on charges of cruelty to persons over the age of 65. Sheriff Ray Cross said more charges are pending, reports WTVC.

"This infuriates me," Mr. Cross said. "Everyone should be upset about this."

The sheriff's office learned almost all of Woodhaven Senior Living's staff had quit June 14. Just one staff member who wasn't a nurse had been looking after patients for 32 consecutive hours, Mr. Cross said. The facility had no working air conditioner, with the thermostat reading 90 degrees, Mr. Cross said, as reported by WTVC.

Deputies arranged vans to transfer nine patients to other facilities, two of whom were taken to a local hospital. As of June 15, those hospitalized were doing OK, Chad Payne, sheriff's office detective, said at a June 15 news conference.

"We were called initially because one of the family members got a call that all the residents were being evicted and they had an hour to get out," said Mr. Payne. 

Mr. Cross said the Georgia Bureau of Investigation is looking into the case.

Becker's has reached out to Woodhaven and will update this article as more information becomes available. 

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