LOS ANGELES (KABC) — Executives of a Los Angeles senior living home are facing criminal charges for a COVID-19 outbreak that officials say led to the deaths of 13 residents and an employee in the early days of the pandemic.
Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón announced the charges Tuesday against Silverado Senior Living Management Inc., its CEO and corporate officers and a facility administrator. Charges include felony elder endangerment.
Gascón said the outbreak was one of the worst at any facility in California.
The DA’s office alleges that in March 2020 the Beverly Place facility in the Fairfax District accepted a patient from New York – where COVID cases were already rising – without testing that individual.
That patient allegedly brought the coronavirus into the facility, leading to more than 100 infections, the deaths of 13 patients and a 32-year-old nurse who treated him.
“They told us, don’t worry, your parents are safe,” said Helena Apothaker, whose mother died at the facility. “You can’t come in, other people can’t come in, we don’t need any extra care. We’ve got it, we’re on lockdown. Nobody can see your parents, don’t you worry. They’re safe.”
Apothaker is now part of a pending civil suit against the agency. Her attorney, Jody Moore, is representing six other family members who died from COVID-19 at Silverado.
“The charges are important. They shine a light on a broken system,” Moore said. “They are shining a light on corporate greed.”