Mannford Police Make 2 More Arrests In Elder Abuse Case
MANNFORD, Oklahoma - Mannford Police arrested two more people in connection with a nursing home investigation that started earlier in September.
Despite making three arrests total in the case, the police chief said the investigation is far from over. Officers are looking for one more suspect and want DHS held accountable, saying the agency “dropped the ball.”
Three of the four suspects who used to work at the Cimarron Pointe Care Center have been arrested, after one turned himself in Tuesday night, and another Wednesday morning.
John Rose and Blake McLellan, both 19, are the two latest suspects Mannford police arrested in the case. They are accused of failing to report abuse they knew about. McLellan is also accused of abuse as a caretaker.
Officers said McLellan and 21-year-old Senite Smith took a selfie with a naked, elderly man in the background. Smith was arrested earlier this month.
Mannford Police Chief Lucky Miller said DHS was tipped off about the abuse through an email and a phone call back in May, but Miller didn't learn about it until police received their own tip earlier in September. He said someone emailed the DHS hotline May 20th regarding the abuse, and someone else called DHS about the about abuse on May 16th.
Now the chief wants to look at email servers at the department's Oklahoma City and Sapulpa offices.
"Something needs to be done. I feel that they dropped the ball. They had two different instances where they received information and did nothing," Miller said.
While officers wait to learn more, they are still busy piecing together evidence. Mannford police have data from three cell phones on a hard drive. One of the phones, officers discovered, has 14,000 images on it they will need to sift through.
"We spent about six hours on it yesterday. It's gonna take - it's gonna take a while,” Miller said.
Court documents show the abuse went beyond taking pictures, and got physical. Smith’s arrest affidavit says abuse by one of the men included slapping a resident in the private parts, and running cold water over a woman until she screamed.
"We can prove with photographs and text messages that some of abuse did occur after they received the two notifications. We could have stopped that,” Miller said.
When asked about the potential search warrants a DHS spokesperson responded in an email, saying, "Law enforcement can get APS records pursuant to the Adult Protective Services for Vulnerable Adults Act. The records cannot be disclosed for any unauthorized purpose.”
Police said they plan to arrest one more suspect later this week.