As reported extensively in Arizona, covered increasingly in America and even reported in the Daily Mail and soon The Guardian in the United Kingdom, Hacienda Healthcare of Arizona is experiencing hell fire for their failure to protect a vulnerable 29 year old developmentally disabled female member of the Apache Tribe, from a rapist, possibly a multi-assault sexual predator still in their midst. Hacienda CEO, Bill Timmons, a holder of numerous carefully curried political connections, resigned in disgrace last week.
As a result, the purported “volunteer” Board of Directors at Hacienda Healthcare finds itself in a full-fledged crisis entirely of their own making. Far more likely than not, this horrific scandal will continue to unfold thanks to a Hacienda whistleblower in follow up to a frantic 911 call to save the victim’s miracle baby boy.
Sexual predators never attack once and typically prey on numerous innocent victims. Price gauging vendors and corrupt businesses are part of parcel of state government contracts in Arizona. The Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES) remains a broken bureaucratic behemoth.
Governor Doug Ducey has notched some big wins since 2015, but his Administration has also notched some epic failures. The still-unfolding Hacienda Healthcare Scandal includes all the aforementioned except for the poll-driven Governor notching a big win.
Rape, Assault and Negligence at Hacienda
The 2018 Crime Clock based on 2017 Federal Crime Statistics produced by the U.S. Department of Justice starkly outlines the troubling frequency of violent crime in America. On average, one rape occurs in America every 3.9 minutes. Furthermore, studies show the developmentally disabled, many of which are the very most vulnerable in America, suffer crime 50 percent more than average Americans.
The 29 year old victim of Hacienda’s lack of care has been in a full vegetative state since she partially drowned 26 years ago. She has been housed at Hacienda Healthcare in South Phoenix for the past 14 years. She was raped last spring, perhaps March, 2018. Of course, we will never know the exact date of the rape because this vulnerable and defenseless 114 pound woman cannot communicate. She cannot communicate whatsoever. We will also never know how many times she was raped before and after her pregnancy. This also begs the vexing and sickening questions of how many other developmentally disabled clients at Hacienda were sexually assaulted, how often were they assaulted and how long did this horror exist. The families of patients presently at Hacienda are left wondering if their loved one was a victim too.
The Hacienda Healthcare website (www.HaciendaInc.org) proudly states: “We offer the highest quality of care, a compassionate staff and a warm, inviting atmosphere, one that welcomes you and your family…Through Active Treatment, we enrich the lives of children, young adults and adults with varying disabilities. Active Treatment is the aggressive, consistent and organized effort to maximize each individual’s fullest developmental potential.”
All of this begs more questions than this first article will list. Important and vexing questions like the following: Does Hacienda do criminal background checks on their employees? Are male attendants at Hacienda left alone with female patients? Don’t Hacienda supervisors also make regular rounds and health checks on patients, particularly the most severely debilitated? How is it possible a client patient with 24/7 care could suffer one rape, let alone the high probability of numerous sexual assaults? How is it possible the 24/7 caregivers could overlook the typical physical marks of rape and other sexual assaults? With the high probability there were other sexual assault victims, how is it possible these horrific crimes went unnoticed, undetected and undercover? How is it possible everyone at Hacienda, except perhaps the rapist, was surprised and shocked by the birth of the child when they are literally responsible for hands-on care 24/7 for 365 days a year? How is it possible the 24/7 caregivers, supervisors and management failed to identify the dear woman’s pregnancy, particularly during the crucial months 5, 6, 7, 8 all the way to birth? Isn’t reasonable to assume the dear defenseless woman did not menstruate for most of 2018 since she was pregnant? Shouldn’t something that notable for a female patient in a vegetative state catalyze questions if not raise alarms for the 24/7 healthcare workers and supervisors? On the day, the boy was born, how is it possible that no one detected his mother’s water breaking? Isn’t fair to consider that event would have been noticeable enough to generate numerous questions and urgent concerns? Why wasn’t 911 called even prior to the Hacienda staff shockingly realizing the fully disabled woman was in the process of giving birth? Another damning question: why did it take a whistleblowing Hacienda employee to inform the media which triggered the urgent involvement of the Phoenix Police Department above and beyond any interactions with 911 officials?
Financial Malfeasance Suspected by Arizona Department of Economic Security For Nearly A Decade
Former Maricopa County Attorney Rick Romley has been hired by Hacienda Healthcare’s Board of Directors to “investigate” important operational issues like patient security and management practices. However, as Laurie Roberts, an opinion columnist with the Arizona Republic, pointed out in her column on the matter, “the investigation is already falling short.”
By all accounts, it does not appear Mr. Romley’s investigation includes the ability to investigate the financial malfeasance that has been suspected by the Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES) since 2015. Although Mr. Romley’s presence at Hacienda Healthcare has been widely welcomed by the tight-knit developmental disabilities community, there is concern that all scandalous behavior will not be discovered and brought to an end. Yet, because the Phoenix Police Department is no nonsense in their pursuit of criminals, there remains hope that guilty parties will be brought to justice.