Thursday, July 22, 2010

Hardee County Florida woman charged with elderly neglect

Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum has announced the arrest of a Hardee County woman who has been charged with operating assisted living facilities without a license and neglecting elderly adults under her care.

The arrest followed a joint investigation by McCollum's Medicaid Fraud Control Unit's Patient Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation (PANE) Team and the Hardee County Sheriff's Office.

Investigators said that Juanita Jackson Wright, 52, was operating three assisted living facilities in Wauchula without a license. She currently has two licensed facilities, but failed to get licenses for the three others.

Two of the unlicensed facilities were condemned in June by the county as unfit for habitation, which is the basis for the charges of neglect.

If convicted, Wright could face a maximum penalty of 25 years in prison and $25,000 in fines.

McCollum's PANE Team has played a key role in the investigation of this case. The group acts to detect abuse and neglect of elderly and disabled adults and ensure that efficient and effective health care is being provided.

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