An assisted living resident with dementia and his wife were awarded a $3.6 million verdict by an Arapahoe County Jury. Peregrine Senior Living at Aurora is to pay the damages.
Represented by Denver-based Reinan Law, Robert Fisher, and his wife Bonnie were awarded $3 million punitive damages and $600,000 for medical costs and damages, not from his assailant, another resident, but rather from the senior living facility in which he was residing.
Man Attacked by Fellow Resident
As reported in The Denver Post, Fisher had received numerous injuries caused by deep and bloody bites, scratches, slaps, and punches which were not sustained by a fall, as the nursing home alleged, but rather by an attack from a fellow female resident at the end of January. That resident had attacked several caregivers and fellow residents in the days prior to attacking Mr. Fisher. The facility’s administrator knew about these attacks, but did not inform the police, the Health Department, or the resident’s physician, all of which were required under Colorado law. As a result, the jury found that Peregrine knew about dangerous conditions but failed to protect Mr. Fisher from those conditions.
The jury heard evidence that the assisted-care facility cared for up to 26 dementia residents with only two staff members during the day and only one staff member at night. Many of these residents were dependent on staff for toileting, diaper changes, and basic necessities. Bonnie Fisher had been assured when her husband moved in of a high aide to patient ratio, but the home did not keep up, allowing the ratio to fall well below desired numbers. As a result, Mr. Fisher was often left sitting in his wastes for hours on end, and was often left unfed and without activities. Peregrine charged the Fishers almost $7,000 per month for what the jury found was an intentionally neglectful atmosphere.
Residents to Caretaker Numbers Continued to Rise
Fisher, a retired teacher, had moved into the facility in 2017 when his dementia became such that he could no longer be cared for in his previous home. He had developed a tendency to wander. Since moving, he had fallen some seven times. This was the first known time he had suffered injuries inflicted by another patient.
The Aurora facility is one of several Peregrine facilities in the U.S., located in Colorado, New York, and Georgia. According to its website, “We are an assisted living company dedicated to providing outstanding care to seniors, especially seniors with memory loss,” said Peregrine Senior Living President, Stephen S. Bowman.
Reinan Law represents residents and families that have been subjected to neglect and abuse by long term care providers. We recommend that family members do their due diligence in not only seeking out a well-equipped living situation but to follow up on a regular basis to ensure your loved is receiving proper care. If you question the care your family member is receiving, feel free to give us a call at (303) 894-0383. Find out more information about our services on our areas of practice page.