Reports of a sexual assault at a Lawrence senior living facility must be taken extremely seriously. It is hoped that there will be a thorough investigation by the proper law enforcement and health officials and those in charge of inspecting and licensing such facilities.
Such crimes are despicable when committed against able-bodied individuals, but they are even more outrageous when committed against an incapacitated, elderly individual in a care facility.
It is understandable that those in charge of the facility must be careful in how they handle such situations because of the severe consequences that could result. Even so, officials should have been far more forthcoming in acknowledging the incident and reassuring the public that a thorough investigation would be conducted and appropriate legal action pursued.
Last week, a management official at the local facility reportedly addressed the pending case at a meeting of residents. However, he refused to allow a Journal-World reporter to be present and declined to answer any questions about the meeting. This is not the way to give public confidence in the manner the situation is being handled or the facility is being managed.
This case is a sad reminder of the need for frequent inspections and strong enforcement of laws intended to protect residents in care facilities across Kansas.