Former BA Rehab Nurse Accused Of Rape Pleads Guilty
BROKEN ARROW, Oklahoma - A nurse is going to prison for 15 years after pleading guilty to raping women in his care.
Some of his victims were in the court when the decision was made, and their reaction was one of great relief.
Their journey began in the summer of 2015 when they were patients at Forest Hills, a Broken Arrow rehabilitation center.
They started reporting their nurse, Wesley Harrison, was raping them, but, the women said he was also medicating them, so their memories were at times fuzzy, and the details confused.
Linda was recovering from back surgery.
"I knew it was true in my heart, but for him to say it, it meant so much to me," she said.
Julie had fallen off a ladder and was recovering from a broken hip. She wondered if the assault was a terrible dream until she saw a hickey on her breast.
"The trauma will always be with me. What he did will always be with me, but now, he's behind bars and he can't hurt me no more," she said.
The sex crimes detective assigned the case and prosecutors with the district attorney’s special victims unit believed the women and set out to get them justice.
The plea deal called for Harrison to go to prison for 15 years, register as a sex offender when he's released and give up his nursing license forever.
"It's one of the most horrible experiences. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy," one of the victim’s daughter said.
She said her mother was a victim and that her mother's joy has been replaced with fear. She said we trust medical professionals to care for those who are vulnerable, not prey on them.
"There's an implied sense of trust not to be violated," she said.
The women now share a bond and said the guilty plea and sentence gives them a sense of peace.
"We wanted the judge to know these victims did this, not for themselves, but for other women," said Tulsa County Assistant District Attorney Kenneth Elmore.
When the crime happened, 15 years was the maximum sentence for rape by instrumentation.
The D.A.'s office worked hard to get lawmakers to change the law, which they did in 2017. From now on, it'll be considered first-degree rape, not second, which makes the maximum life in prison.