COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - New details have emerged about the poor conditions inside a Columbus senior care facility.
The Facility Director of Loving Care Senior Citizen Home was arrested on Dec. 4 on multiple charges. According to officials, Sheryl Drakeford willingly exploited disabled adults, elderly persons, or residents at the facility. Three others connected to the institution were arrested as well.
This was found during an inspection conducted by the Georgia Department of Community Health to verify if the facility met state requirements.
Two months prior to the arrests, allegations of human trafficking and sexual exploitation emerged after healthcare workers Marcus and KaShonda Miles were arrested.
Columbus Police began investigating the facility with agents from the FBI, Georgia Healthcare Facility Regulation Division, and other officials after learning that the licensed care facility was allegedly sending patients to unlicensed group homes. According to officials, Drakeford would take some elderly and disabled adults into her own home because the facility was overcrowded. Some patients slept on couches or bathroom floors due to lack of living space.
The "more obnoxious and troubling" patients" were sent to unlicensed facilities with even worse conditions. They would endure both physical cruelty and sexual abuse.
Patients were not given enough food to eat, and some food that was found in the facility was expired or exposed. Some bags of food were covered in bugs and roach feces.
Several patients stated they had not received any funds that was meant for them. They were being deposited to Mrs. Drakeford. She apparently took hundreds of dollars from her patients, including money that was meant to be used for their own spending purposes.
The facility violated several healthcare regulations including being understaffed, maintaining an over capacitated facility, inadequate food storage, medication mismanagement, and improper documentation.
Drakeford was charged with felony abuse, neglect and exploitation of disabled persons, and operating a personal care home without a license.
Bruce Davis was also arrested for the same charges. It is unknown at this time how he is connected to the institution.
Former employees Marcus Miles and KaShonda Miles were charged with aggravated child molestation, false imprisonment, and sexual assault of a person while in custody.
Additional arrests are possible in the future.