Nursing home aide charged with assault

Allegedly struck elderly resident

By Brian Ballou
Globe Staff / August 15, 2009

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A nurse’s aide, accused of punching and threatening an 83-year-old nursing home resident who has Alzheimer’s disease, was arraigned in Malden District Court this week on assault and battery charges, authorities said.

The state attorney general’s office said that Marie Michel, 54, of Medford, punched the woman twice in the chest and stomach about 4 a.m. on Sept. 17, 2008, pushed her down onto her bed, and ordered her not to get up again. according to the state attorney general’s office. The elderly woman had gotten out of bed at the Epoch Senior Healthcare center in Melrose and was apparently wandering around her room when Michel allegedly entered and starting hitting her.

Investigators say that the victim’s roommate witnessed the attack and that an investigation was launched last October. Jill Butterworth, spokeswoman for the attorney general’s office, said yesterday: “The investigation relied on statements from the victim, as well as the witness.’’

Michel, who has since been fired by Epoch, was charged with assault and battery on an elderly person and threatening to commit a crime. Through her attorney, she entered a not-guilty plea on Thursday and was released on personal recognizance.

She was ordered not to have contact with victim or witness and not to work in patient care.