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2 MN. Teens Nursing Home Abuse Case Face Judge

2 MN. Teens Nursing Home Abuse Case Face Judge

Brianna Marie Broitzman (left) and Ashton Michelle Larson (right)


January 23, 2009

ALBERT LEA, MINN. – Two young women charged with abusing seven nursing home residents faced a judge for the first time Wednesday in a courtroom packed with relatives of the residents.

Brianna Marie Broitzman and Ashton Michelle Larson, both 19, of Albert Lea, did not enter pleas in Freeborn County District Court. Judge Steven Schwab set bail at $6,000 for their unconditional release or $2,000 with restrictions, the maximum under state law.

Each posted $2,000 bail and agreed not to contact victims or their families, other defendants or witnesses.

Last month, Broitzman was charged with 11 gross misdemeanors and Larson with 10 for fifth-degree assault, physical and sexual abuse of vulnerable adults, disorderly conduct by a caregiver and failing to report suspected abuse.

The criminal complaint described several months of abuse that included spitting in residents’ mouths, poking and groping their breasts and genitals, and at times taunting them until they screamed. The abuse allegedly occurred as the young women worked evening shifts at Good Samaritan Society Albert Lea nursing home.

The matter gained public attention in August when Minnesota Department of Health inspectors concluded that four aides had abused 15 residents with dementia between January and May of last year.

In juvenile court last week, one former aide pleaded guilty to failing to report the alleged abuse and three others denied guilt, County Attorney Craig Nelson said. Now age 18, those four were charged as juveniles because they were 17 at the time, Nelson said.

During Wednesday’s hearing, Broitzman’s attorney, Lawrence Maus of nearby Austin, said his client “is going to challenge this complaint.”

Schwab ordered the defendants to return March 23 for a pretrial hearing, when they may enter pleas.

© YellowBrix 2009

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 6 years ago


    First of all, I just want to say that I've worked in an assisted living facility (for the past 5 years) that hired young girls who are still in HS and have trained them on the spot and then certified them (through a class) to be home health aides. I have seen the turn over, I have seen all walks of life come in and leave. Most of these girls walked in off the street to care for people that needed nursing home care. Just because someone is young (say 17 or 18) does NOT mean that they should not be caring for an adult. Some of these girls I have trained were EXCELLENT health care providers aspiring to be a nurse some day; and I have to tell you that some of the older health care providers who were already certified were the ones who were more abusive and worse caregivers than the yyounger aides. I am 22 years old and on the road to being an RN. I treat every resident as if they were my own family and I can personally say that the quality of care a resident recieves has no reflection on the age of the caregiver.

    This situation was one that should have never happened I agree 100% its sickening, but these girls could have easily been 27 or 37 its not because they are teenagers. Please dont make excuses for them.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 6 years ago


    What is happening to the youth of america??? when I started out in long term care over 25 years ago, as a CNA, no licencing was needed, I worked on a 42 pt floor, of dementia patients. At times there were only 2-3 aids working 3-11. All our pt.s recieved exceptional care, we took PRIDE in helping others and treated all residents like they were our grand parent or relative.... What happened, how on Gods green earth do you "spit in another human beings mouth???!!!! or hurt them in any way.......... I think some one needs to make an example of these girls, I dont care how old they are. This is just another example of the fall of the american family, where is mom and dad to teach children the word RESPECT? especially with helpless individuals..... I hope they get what they deserve.

  • Nov_2008_puppy_dolly_spups_001_max50


    almost 6 years ago


    I am appalled!!! I agree with the comments below. I was raised by my grandparents, so I attach easily to elderly people. I can not stand to hear about such abuse cases. It is sad enough to walk into a nursing home and see so many begging for any amount of attention. Shame on those girls and shame on others who worked in that facility. Someone should have caught the abuse much, much sooner! I really hope that those girls get more than just a slap on the wrist.

  • Pensive_2_max50


    almost 7 years ago


    I hope that not only are these despicable "teens" charged as adults, but that they have the book thrown at them -- maximum penalties as allowed under the law!

  • Lori_recruiter_extraordinare___max50


    almost 7 years ago



  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 7 years ago


    Perhaps someone should poke and grope their genitals and spit into their mouths until they scream. What is going on here? I noticed the bail was low...humm, wonder what the bail would have been if they mistreated some animals or disturbed an eagles nest?

  • Wedding_pics5_max50


    almost 7 years ago


    That is truly truly sad, but the old saying "what goes around comes around" is far from just a saying, and one day they will be old and need someone to take care of them!

  • 100_0100_max50


    almost 7 years ago


    I am surprised that they let 17 year olds work in this capacity. There are normally strict guidelines for background checks and such to keep things like this from happening. These girls need to be put into the same situation as these people they abused and see how they like it!

  • Picture_021_max50


    almost 7 years ago


    Why dont kids respect their elders anymore? Its not just saying 'please and thank you'.......they are a cruel bunch of criminals doing heinous crimes. As far as what CD said...........why in the heck did that facility hire those kids? Was there a background check done on them?

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Account Removed

    about 6 years ago

    Its sad what really happens to patients behind close doors sometimes. Maybe cameras should be installed in every room. This might be a deterent.....even though a nurse should never act this way to begin with. Some people make me sick.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 6 years ago


    How in the heck do you have the guts to pick on old people like that!! They cant even take care of themselves little lon fight back aganist abuse!! If i was their momma i would be beatin' someone behind!!!!

  • Pa300080_max50


    about 6 years ago


    I am with some of you, how the heck did these teens/young adults get allowed to work in this position??? Where I am from a person had to be at least 18 to work or even volunteer at a nursing home or assisted living facility. The nursing homes even had strict rules about children and teens visiting and an adult had to be with anyone under 18. This is just too sad!

  • Maine_021_max50


    about 6 years ago


    It's awful for what did and may have happened to the patients. What's even worse is that the patients may never be able to fully trust a care giver again. Gotta love those immature 17-year old girls that reuined the lives of patients, their families and the reputation of health care providers. They should try them as adults --

  • Tarsier_max50


    about 6 years ago


    I have complained to my nursing supervisor about nurses who leave patients in pain for hours because they are "too busy" or "I need to finish my charting first" or other excuses. I believe this is also abuse. I can't imagine being stuck in a hospital bed for 2 hours waiting for someone to bring me pain medication. This is in a post surgical hospital setting. I had more than one patient tell me about how they waited one or more hours for pain medication. I think this is very thoughtless and cruel. This is done by RNs who have years of experience, not teenagers.

  • Blueflower_max50


    about 6 years ago


    Why were they working in that capacity at 17?????? Why did the supervisors notice anything was going on?????

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