An employee of Heritage Village Assisted Living in Mesa, Arizona has been arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting an 85-year-old dementia patient at the facility.
58-year-old Manuel Corral was arrested on Sunday, February 16. According to the Mesa Police, Heritage Valley staff members contacted the department on Sunday to report an alleged sexual assault.
He has been charged with six counts of sexual assault and one count each of kidnapping and sexual abuse.
Corral was working as a night watchman at the facility. Investigators believe he sexually assaulted the woman on Friday night and that he was the only staff member assigned to her unit.
Detectives say the alleged victim told them that she was asleep on Friday night when Corral entered her room and sexually assaulted her. According to investigators, Corral admitted to doing so during a police interview.
This is not the first time Corral has faced sexual assault allegations, according to the Mesa Police. He was first investigated in 2012 after a woman accused him of forcing her to perform a sexual act on him. He was also questioned in 2014 for allegedly physically abusing two male patients. Police say that Corral has admitted to lying to investigators in the 2012 case.
All of these allegations were related to Corral’s work as an overnight caregiver at different adult care facilities.
Assisted living facility abuse victims and their families have legal rights. We’ve asked attorney contributor and sexual abuse victims lawyer Kevin Biniazin to add some of his thoughts on these legal rights:
The safety of patients and residents must be the top priority for all assisted living facilities. Sadly, the elderly and others who live in these facilities are in vulnerable positions and at a higher risk of becoming sexual abuse victims.
While most assisted living facility employees are trustworthy, there have tragically been many cases of residents being sexually assaulted by the employees who were trusted to care for them. Management must stay aware of the threat that sexual predators pose to their residents and must do everything they can to reduce this threat as much as possible.
The perpetrators of these heinous crimes are not the only ones who should be investigated. It’s also important to investigate the facility to determine if negligence played a role in enabling the sexual assault of a resident – such as failing to run a background check and hiring an employee with a history of sexual misconduct.
In cases where negligence is found to have contributed to an assisted living facility sexual assault, the owners of the facility could be held liable if the victims and their families decide to file a lawsuit.
If you or a loved one is a victim of sexual assault at an assisted living facility, you can learn more about your legal options in a free consultation with one of our experienced sexual assault victims lawyers.