Judge dismisses elder abuse charges | RecordCourier.com

Judge dismisses elder abuse charges

by Rachel Spacek
rspacek@recordcourier.com

Charges against a Gardnerville woman were dismissed after a preliminary hearing in East Fork Justice Court.

Kay M. Anderson, 66, registered nurse at Carson Valley Residential Care Center, was originally arrested on charges of elder abuse and neglect and the conspiracy to commit criminal neglect of a patient.

Ron Cauley, who represented Anderson in court, said all of the charges were dismissed when the judge found no evidence to support the allegations.

In an interview with deputies, Anderson admitted she was upset and stressed about having the unsteady victim in the unit, but denied allowing her to fall from the chair and said she never intended the victim to get hurt.

Video surveillance footage was taken of the events. According to Erik Levin, prosecutor in the case, he thought the witness testimony and video surveillance would be enough to charge Anderson. Levin also said four to five witnesses testified during what he said was a lengthy hearing.

Levin said in her testimony, Anderson said she assigned a caretaker to watch the victim while she was attempting to find somewhere else for the victim to go that was more equipped to take care of her.

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After the hearing, all of the charges were dropped.

Because charges were dropped at the preliminary hearing, double jeopardy is attached and the prosecution may not pursue any further charges related to the case.

While a preliminary hearing is not a trial, it does require the prosecution to meet the a standard of evidence that a crime was committed and that there is sufficient evidence that the person accused committed it.

Had the judge found in favor of the state, the case would have still had to go to trial.

According to court documents, Anderson allegedly ordered employees at Carson Valley Residential Care Center not to provide care to a patient who was reported to be "extremely unsteady" and "could not walk without assistance."