A wrongful death lawsuit has recently been brought against Brandon Woods of Dartmouth nursing home, by the family of Elizabeth W. Barrow, a 100-year old resident of the facility who was allegedly strangled to death last year by her roommate, who was 98-years old.
Barrow reportedly shared a room with Laura Lundquist, a 98-year old who has been diagnosed with having dementia and paranoia. According to Barrow’s son Scott, Lundquist allegedly harassed his mother for weeks, making her life miserable because she was jealous of all the attention that Barrow received, as well as the window view. Scott Barrow reportedly asked for the women to be separated, but according to the director of the home, Scott Picone, Barrow declined the option of moving rooms. Picone said the two roommates acted like “sisters” and took walks together.
On September 24th of last year, Elizabeth Barrow was reportedly strangled to death in her bed with a plastic bad. The autopsy revealed that she died by means of asphyxiation, but also received blunt force trauma to her arms, leg, skull and chest. Lundquist has been charged with the murder.
The lawsuit claims that the nursing home staff and executive director were negligent, as they were responsible for providing his mother with a safe environment, and they failed. He claims that as a result of the nursing home’s carelessness and negligence, Barrow was forced to suffer consciously until the time of her death.
Picone reportedly claimed that the Department of Public Health conducted a 10-week investigation that cleared the home of any wrongdoing, and that this tragic incident could have happened anywhere—but just happened to occur in his nursing home. After the incident, Picone donated $5,000 to the Dartmouth Public Library to buy large-print books in memory of Elizabeth Barrow—as those were her favorite to read.
Lundquist has been charged with second-degree murder and is still going through a medical evaluation at Taunton State Hospital. She is reportedly the oldest murder defendant in the history of the State of Massachusetts. If she is found mentally competent, she will stand trial.
Under the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987, all residents living in nursing homes are entitled to receive quality of care and attention in an environment that is free from nursing home abuse and neglect and that improves and maintains their mental and physical health.
As Maryland Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Lawyers, we support the rights for Maryland residents to receive this kind of quality care and treatment that is free from nursing home abuse that can lead to wrongful death.
Slain 100-year-old Woman’s Family Files Wrongful Lawsuit Against Brandon Woods of Dartmouth, South Coast Today.com, May 29, 2010
Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Violations, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, October 12, 2010
Web Related Resources:
National Center on Elder Abuse, (NCEA)
Maryland Department of Aging, (MDOA)