The Boston Channel had an article about the epidemic of sexual predators living and working in nursing homes. Team 5 Investigates discovered level 3 sex offenders – the ones deemed by the state to be the most dangerous and likely to reoffend – living and working inside Massachusetts nursing homes.
“They’re all living under the same roof,” said Wes Bledsoe, president and co-founder of A Perfect Cause, a national organization dedicated to protecting nursing home patients. “Typically there’s not enough staff or security to protect those residents.” “When you put predators in with the prey, someone is going to get bit,” said Bledsoe. “We have documented over 60 cases where child molesters have, in fact, sexually, physically assaulted, even raped other long-term care residents,” said Bledsoe.
The article gives many examples of sexual predators but experts point to a particularly vicious 2005 case in Norwood, Mass. John Enos, 69, a level 3 sex offender confined to a wheelchair allegedly raped his 90-year-old nursing home roommate. Enos had previously served 15 years in prison for sexually assaulting his own 9-year-old daughter.
That case helped prompt a change in Massachusetts law. With few exceptions, it is now illegal for level 3 sex offenders to live in nursing homes. But in what some call a loophole, the statute says level 3 offenders cannot live in nursing homes “knowingly or willingly.”
“It’s outrageous that there should be any loophole in any law that allows sex offenders anywhere near nursing homes,” said attorney Wendy Murphy.
There is also no law on the books requiring that nursing homes notify anyone – not residents, staff or visitors — when level 3 sex offenders are living and working in their facilities.