Skip to main content

Cops Investigating Rape After Woman in Vegetative State for More Than a Decade Gives Birth


Cops in Phoenix, Arizona say they are investigating the rape of a woman who gave birth even though she has been in a vegetative state for more than a decade.

“None of the staff were aware that she was pregnant until she was pretty much giving birth,” a source familiar with what happened said, according to KPHO-TV.

The woman, a patient at the Hacienda HealthCare Facility because she almost drowned years ago, gave birth to a baby boy on Saturday. The source said the patient was in no position to defend herself or communicate.

“From what I know the baby is alive, and the baby is healthy,’ the source said. She told the outlet that there’s a new policy that male staff members need to be accompanied by their female coworkers when entering a female patient’s room.

Sgt. Tommy Thompson, of the Phoenix Police Department, confirmed that they are investigating the matter. Law&Crime followed up to ask what more police have learned about the incident, but Thompson simply confirmed they are working on this case.

Hacienda Healthcare said that they cannot comment given ongoing investigations and because federal and state privacy laws prohibit comment on a patient. Here’s the full statement provided to Law&Crime.

Hacienda HealthCare has been in business in Arizona for more than 50 years. In that time, we have reliably and safely served thousands of residents and their families. We are proud of our record and our position as an industry leader in caring for the intellectually and developmentally disabled.

With that said, we have recently become aware of a deeply disturbing incident involving the health and safety of a Hacienda resident. While federal and state privacy laws prohibit us from publicly discussing a patient’s health or case, Hacienda has and will continue to cooperate fully with law enforcement and all the relevant regulatory agencies regarding this matter.

As an organization, Hacienda HealthCare stands fully committed to getting to the truth of what, for us, represents an unprecedented matter. We are already conducting a comprehensive internal review of our processes, protocols, and people to ensure that every single Hacienda resident is as safe and well cared for as possible. Anything less than that is unacceptable to our team, our company’s leaders and the communities we serve.

While a shocking case, it is not unprecedented one. In 1995, nursing home employee John Horace raped a comatose patient, who ended up giving birth to a boy. The woman, known as Kathy, died in 1997. Horace was sentenced to 25 years in prison and was freed in March 2013 under a conditional release program. He was locked up again the following December when officers claimed he violated his parole by being out driving in the middle of the night. Kathy’s son was adopted by her grandmother.

Note: We added the statement from Hacienda HealthCare.

[Screengrab via KPHO]

Have a tip we should know? [email protected]

Filed Under:

Follow Law&Crime: