Monthly Archives: July 2014

Brutal abuse at Calabasas retirement home described in testimony

Assisted living facilities and nursing homes can be very dangerous places. While the costs to house your loved ones or family members at these facilities cost thousands of dollars per month, many of the employees who are hired as caregivers have no qualifications or experience caring for the elderly and disabled and are paid minimum wage. For the owners of these places it is all about profit. This story is one of the worst and most difficult to read.

 A former worker is on trial on charges of abuse and torture at the upscale facility. Witnesses say Cesar Ulloa jumped on residents, body-slammed one and encouraged two to fight.

March 30, 2010|By Robert Faturechi

As she made her rounds at an upscale Calabasas retirement home one morning, Adelina Campos said she walked into a room and caught a fellow caregiver in the act of abusing an elderly man suffering from dementia.

The worker was in midair, hurtling from atop a dresser toward the bed, landing both knees onto the man’s belly.

“I was just in shock,” Campos said.

The horrible tale and other accounts of abuse are unfolding this week in the trial of Cesar Ulloa, a low-level employee accused of severely mistreating residents, some of whom would have been too dementia-ridden to alert anyone to the alleged abuse.

Ulloa, 21, is charged with seven counts of elder abuse and one count of torture. If convicted, he faces a possible life sentence. In addition to abusing the elderly man, prosecutors say, Ulloa jumped on a woman’s chest and body-slammed her into a bed when she struggled. The 78-year-old woman was mute because of a brain condition. He also allegedly took the arm of one wheelchair-bound resident and used it to hit another resident who had dementia, encouraging them to fight.

“He attacked the most vulnerable people you can possibly find,” Deputy Dist. Atty. Robin Allen told a Van Nuys jury. “He hit them and he laughed. This was sport.”

For adults considering assisted care homes for their parents, the alleged abuses are particularly distressing because of where they’re said to have occurred: Silverado Senior Living. The Calabasas facilities are about as close to a four-star hotel as retirement homes get, with relatives shelling out upward of $70,000 a year to house their loved ones.

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Money Magazine has honored Sylvia Rudek, a volunteer with NASGA, the National Association to Stop Guardian Abuse. Sylvia Rudek is an amazing woman who has selflessly volunteered her time working with NASGA to help victims of guardianship abuse on a national level. Sylvia  also works on guardianship abuse within her own state of Illinois. 

 Illness: Make health care and property powers of attorney and advance directives known to your loved ones before the need arises, says Sylvia Rudek of Illinois, director of the National Association to Stop Guardian Abuse. This reduces the chance of a dispute that might end up in court.

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