Sunday, February 09, 2014

Probable Cause Affidavit and Initial Hearing Order for Kathy Hess in Woodland Hills Nursing Home Case



 Probable Cause Affidavit and Initial Hearing Order for Kathy Hess in Woodland Hills Nursing Home Case

Please note this file was converted from the original pdf file to post to this blog.

 

STATE OF INDIANA ) IN THE DEARBORN Superior Court No 1

) SS: COUNTY OF DEARBORN) GENERAL TERM, 2013


I, Jacob Jump, do hereby affirm under penalties for perjury that: On or about December 20, 2013, in Dearborn County, State of Indiana, Kathy J. Hess,

Count I: Battery Resulting in Death of an Endangered Adult

I.C. 35-42-2-1 (a)(7) Class B Felony

Count II: Neglect of a Dependent Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury

I. C. 35-46~ 1-4(a)(1)(2) Class B Felony

Count III: Reckless Homicide I.C.35-42-1-5 Class C Felony



STATE OF INDIANA INFORMATION FOR:

VS.                                           

KATHYJ.HESS

22912 Murray Road

Bright, IN 47025





I, Jacob Jump, do hereby affirm under penalties for perjury that: On or about December 20,2013, in Dearborn County, State of Indiana, Kathy J. Hess did knowingly touch another person, to-wit: Dionne Scalf, in a rude, insolent, and/or angry manner, to-wit: did hyper-extend Dionne Scalf's back, resulting in the death of Dionne Scalf. All of which is contrary to the form of the statute in such cases made and provided, to-wit: I.C. 35-42-2-1 (a)(7), and against the peace and dignity of the State of Indiana.


COUNT II:

having the care of a dependent, to-wit: Dionne Scalf, whether assumed voluntarily or because of a legal obligation, did knowingly place the dependent in a situation that endangers the dependent's life or health, to-wit: did hyper-extend Dionne Scalf's back, resulting in serious bodily injury, to-wit: fractured vertebra.

All of which is contrary to the form of the statute in such cases made and provided, to-wit: I.C. 35-46-1-4(a)(1 )(2), and against the peace and dignity of the State of Indiana. COUNT III:

I, Jacob Jump, do hereby affirm under penalties for perjury that: On or about December 20, 2013, in Dearborn County, State of Indiana, Kathy J. Hess did recklessly kill another human being, to-wit: Dionne Scalf.

All of which is contrary to the form of the statute in such cases made and provided, to-wit: I.C. 35-42-1-5, and against the peace and dignity of the State of Indiana.

I affirm under the penalties of perjury that the foregoing representations are true to the best of my knowledge and belief.

Jacob Jump LPD/SCU

Approved by me, (Signed)Prosecuting Attorney for the Seventh Judicial Circuit, this 4th day of February,2014.




STATE OF INDIANA IN THE DEARBORN SUPERIOR COURT No 1


COUNTY OF DEARBORN GENERAL TERM 2014


IN THE MATTER OF CRIMINAL

INVESTIGATION IN DEARBORN COUNTY, INDIANA

CAUSE NO 15D01-1402-FB-005

PROBABLE CAUSE AFFIDAVIT 


Comes now Jacob Jump and hereby swears or affirms as follows:

That at all times pertinent to the matters discussed herein, your affiant has been employed as an officer with the Lawrenceburg Police Department assigned to the Dearborn County Special Crimes Unit (SCU), in Dearborn County, State of Indiana.

That the following occurred in Dearborn County, State of Indiana, unless otherwise documented.

On December 24,2013, your affiant was advised by Connie Pope, who is your affiant's aunt, in reference to an alleged battery that had taken place at Woodland Hills Care Center in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. Pope advised briefly that her niece, Traci Vowell advised her of an incident she observed while at the Woodland Hills Care Center. Vowell advised her that while visiting her mother at Woodland Hills she saw a nurse who was violent and abusive to her mother's roommate, an older woman named Dionne. Pope could not advise whether or not the police were aware of the incident.


On December 31,2013, your affiant interviewed Traci Vowell. Traci Vowell advised that she was at Woodland Hills Care Center on December 20, 2013 visiting her mother Cheri Lewis. Traci advised while she was there she observed nurse Kathy Hess come into the room to care for and assist her mother's roommate identified as Dionne Scalf. Traci advised she was behind the curtain and believed Hess did not see her when she entered the room. Shortly after Hess entered the room she heard Hess yelling at Dionne, Traci advised Hess seemed angry and she looked out from the curtain to see what was transpiring. TraGi advised when she looked out from the curtain she observed Hess to have a hold of Dionne's shoulder area violently jerking Dionne back and forth attempting to get her to release her walker. After observing Hess jerking on Dionne she observed Hess and Scalf to be in the restroom that was in the room, While they were in the restroom she could hear commotion and Hess yelling at Scalf. Traci stated she then yelled over and asked Hess if she needed anything and shortly after Hess and Scalf came out of the restroom. Traci advised she looked back out of the curtain and observed Hess with Dionne and Dionne was seated possibly on the bed. Traci stated Dionne was staring up with her mouth and eyes wide open. Traci advised she believed Dionne was possibly dead or dying.

Your affiant retrieved Dionne's Scalfs records from Lawrenceburg EMS and Dearborn County Hospital for her transport to Dearborn County Hospital that were dated December 20, 2013. The records indicated EMS responded to a report at Woodland Hills Care Center on December 20, 2013, that Dionne Scalf was not breathing. CPR was being administered to Scalf by Woodland Hills staff when EMS arrived at Woodland Hills Care Center and continued by EMS as Scalf arrived at Dearborn County Hospital. EMS documented a lot of vomiting. Records indicated Scalf was admitted to Dearborn County Hospital for syncope (loss of consciousness) and collapse with CPR in progress. Fourteen minutes after Scalf arrived at Dearborn County Hospital, Scalf was pronounced dead.

Once reviewing the records on Dionne Scalf, I contacted Dearborn County Coroner Steve Callahan. Callahan advised his office did not have any involvement with Dionne Scalf since she was transported to the hospital where the doctor pronounced her death. Callahan advised they did not order an autopsy of Scalf and the Township Trustee had made arrangements to have her body cremated since she had no family. Callahan advised Scalf was still at the Cincinnati crematorium. Callahan advised he would have her transported back to Dearborn County to have an autopsy performed.

On January 3,2014, Detective Schneider interviewed Traci Vowell at Lawrenceburg Police Department. In the interview, Traci described her observations and demonstrated how Kathy Hess shook Dionne. In the demonstration, Traci explained that Dionne was using her walker and had a hold of it with her hands. Traci advised that Hess was attempting to remove Dionne from the walker to assist Dionne to the restroom. Traci advised that Dionne was not cooperating with Hess and would not let go of the walker. Traci explained and demonstrated how Hess got behind Dionne and Hess placed her arms under Dionne's shoulders, in Dionne's armpits, and pulled up on Dionne in a violent manner several times in an attempt to remove Dionne from the walker.

On January 3, 2014, your affiant along Det. Schneider interviewed Helen (Cheri) Lewis at Woodland Hills care center. Upon walking into Room 211 I observed Lewis's curtains to be open where she could see who entered her room. Directly across from Lewis's bed was the bed of Dionne Scalf who was her roommate. Det. Schneider spoke with Lewis about the incident involving Kathy Hess and Dionne Scalf. Lewis advised her daughter Traci Vowell was visiting her and had brought her a cell phone. Lewis advised while traci was there Hess came in to assist Dionne to the restroom. While Hess was assisting Scalf Lewis advised she could hear Hess saying in a mean voice get up, get up I told you for the last time get up and she observed Traci watching out from the curtain. Lewis
stated Hess was very mean and angry sounding while speaking with Dionne. Lewis advised she heard Hess being rough and mean with Dionne while in the restroom. Lewis advised she thought then Dionne wouldn't be coming back out. Lewis then overheard Hess attempting to wake Dionne up and heard her counting chest compression trying to wake her up. Det. Schneider asked Lewis to tell him what she believed happened and Lewis stated I think Kathy killed Dionne.

On January 2, 2014, Detective Nick Beetz and your affiant observed the autopsy of Dionne J. Scalf at Dearborn County Hospital. Present for the autopsy were Pathologist Steven Eliason, morgue assistant Emily Bradley and Phlebotomist Amber Case. During the autopsy, Dr. Eliason observed that Scalf's back was broken. Dr. Eliason removed a section of Scalf's vertebrae to preserve evidence of the fracture.

On February 3,2014, your affiant received the completed final report from Dearborn County Pathologist, Dr. Stephen Eliason in regards to the autopsy of Dionne Scalf. Dr. Eliason's report shows when he examined the exterior of Scalf he observed no bruising or defensive marks on her body or any abnormalities on her back. Dr. Eliason's internal examination notes a rather large fracture involving the vertebral column. The fracture is located at approximately the T8 vertebral body. The fracture extends through the entire thickness of the bony vertebral body, and the vertebral column can be moved with a hinge type motion on either side of the fracture. Dr. Eliason notes the adjacent bone is very hard and when the fracture is opened, it shows prominent displacement of the upper edge of the fracture line into the spinal canal. Dr. Eliason observed fresh hemorrhage around the fracture, dissecting under the thoracic pleura. Dr. Eliason's final diagnosis on the cause of death is blunt force injury of the thoracic spine. Based on the information provided by investigators it is Dr. Eliason's opinion the manner of Dionne Scalfs death is homicide.


On January 10, 2014, Detectives McKay, Beetz and Schneider, CSI Wally Lewis, and your affiant met with Dr. Dean Hawley at Indiana University Health Pathology Laboratory in Indianapolis. CSI Lewis transported the section of Dionne's backbone that Dr. Eliason had removed during the autopsy. Dr. Hawley examined the backbone and advised that the only cause of the break would have been a movement back and forth from front to back; not a movement side to side. Dr. Hawley requested that further microscopic examination be done. And he would then make his final ruling.

On January 26,2014, your affiant received the completed final report from pathologist Dean Hawley. Dr. Hawley states in his report that, the microscopic examination confirms that the bone matrix is normal in that there is no pathologic change such as metastatic cancer or abscess to have caused pathologic fracture. There is acute bleeding without inflammatory reaction within the marrow fat, and within the fragmented cortex. He further states that in his opinion with medical certainty, that this fracture occurred before the death of Dionne Scalf and that it occurred at or near the time of her death. That this fracture would have produced significant respiratory distress and may have produced contusion or damage of the spinal cord. The mechanism of this injury is a violent hyper-extension of the back, and could not be the result of chest compression during CPR. This injury did not result from positioning the body for CPR, since there is no skin injury associated with the fracture. Transporting or moving the dead body would not cause this injury. That there is no evidence of any other medical condition that did cause the death of Dionne Scalf. The cause of death is blunt force injury of the chest (thoracic spine) and the manner of death, relying on information provided by investigators is homicide.

That your affiant obtained court documents from the Dearborn County Circuit Court and in an Order issued by Judge James Humphrey and dated September 30, 2013, the Court found "Ms.Dione(sic) Scalf is an incapacitated person, and an endangered adult in need of protective services."

On January 3, 20M, Det. Beetz, Det. Schneider and your affiant interviewed Kathy Hess at her residence at 22912 Murray road in bright Indiana. We were met outside the residence by Kathy's husband Alan Hess. Alan advised he would get Kathy for us and invited us into their residence. Kathy explained her work shift had started at on 12-20-13 at 6:00am and that she had been advised by the night shift that Dionne Scalf had been sick over night but that she hadn't vomited or felt nausea. Kathy advised she did her rounds after speaking with night shift and she checked in on Dionne. Kathy stated she checked her vitals and they were fine and that Dionne was speaking with her.
Kathy advised arproximately 7:30 am thet had taken Dionne her breakfast and she did not want to eat but did want her drink. Kathy stated Dionne seemed fine and she believed she was just constipated since she took Norco's and had the tendency to be constipated. Kathy advised Dionne had come to her during the morning and she had given her milk of magnesia to help her with the constipation. Kathy advised Dionne attempting to use the restroom shortly after taking the milk of magnesia. Kathy stated at approximately 11 :45am Dionne's call light came on and she advised she needed to use the restroom. Kathy advised she then went to Dionne's room to assist in walking her to the restroom. Kathy advised when she reached the restroom Dionne just went out. She advised Dionne was unresponsive and was blue at this time. Kathy stated as she was walking Dionne to the restroom Dionne digressed very quickly. Kathy advised she then sat Dionne on her walker and pushed her into the room and hollered for help. Kathy explained at this time several other employees came to assist her and Dionne was placed on her bed where they started CPR in attempts to save Dionne. Kathy advised Lawrenceburg EMS had then arrived and transported Dionne to the emergency room.

That based upon the foregoing facts, your affiant believes that Probable Cause exists to believe that Kathy J Hess has committed the crime(s) of:


-BATTERY RESULTING IN DEATH OF AN ENDANGERED ADULT, I.C. 35-42-2­1(a)(7), CLASS B FELONY -NEGLECT OF A DEPENDENT RESULTING IN SERIOUS BODILY INJURY, I.C. 35­46-1-4(a)(1 )(2), CLASS B FELONY -RECKLESS HOMICIDE, I.C. 35-42-1-5, CLASS C FELONY

"I AFFIRM, UNDER THE PENALTIES OF PERJURY, THAT THE FOREGOING REPRESENTATIONS ARE TRUE TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE AND BELIEF."



Jacob Jump 217


STATE OF INDIANA ) ) SS: COUNTY OF DEARBORN )


The aforegoing having been examined by me this 4 day of FEB 2014, at 4:24o'clock, PM. This Court now finds that it contains facts sufficient to establish Probable Cause for the arrest and detainer of Kathy J Hess (10-25-55) for the crime(s) of:


-BATTERY RESULTING IN DEATH OF AN ENDANGERED ADULT, I.C. 35-42-2­1(a)(7), CLASS B FELONY -, -NEGLECT OF A DEPENDENT RESULTING IN SERIOUS BODILY INJURY, I.C, 35­46-1-4(a)(1 )(2), CLASS B FELONY -RECKLESS HOMICIDE, I.C. 35-42-1-5, CLASS C FELONY


Signed- Jonathon Cleary

Judge, Dearborn Superior Court 1



STATE OF INDIANA ) IN THE DEARBORN SUPERIOR COURT NO. I )SS: COUNTY OF DEARBORN) GENERAL TERM, 2014 STATE OF INDIANA VS. KATHY J. HESS CAUSE NO. 15D01-1402-FB-005


APPEARANCE FORM (CRIMINAL) State of Indiana


1. Name of Defendant: Kathy J. Hess


2. Case Type of proceeding: Felony "f;'


3. Prosecuting Attorney information:


Name: F. Aaron Negangard Attorney No. 18809-53

Address: Prosecuting Attorney's Office Dearborn Co. Courthouse Lawrenceburg, IN 47025

Phone: 812-537-8884 Fax: 812-537-4295 Computer Address: N/A


1. Will the State accept service by FAX: NO

STATE OF INDIANA DEARBORN SUPERIOR COURT NO.1 Lawrenceburg, Indiana YS.


CAUSE NO. 15001-1402 -FB-0005

Kathy Hess
22912 Murray Rd

Lawrenceburg IN 47025
Filed FEB -5 2014


CLERK OF DEARBORN CIRCUIT COURT
DOB INITIAL HEARING ORDER

The defendant appeared with counsel and the State appeared by Jeffrey Sharp The defendant was advised of the offense(s), rights and responsibilities herein for which a preliminary plea of Not Guilty was entered which after twenty (20) days will become a formal plea unless the defendant, after consulting with counsel, enters a different plea and

IT IS CONSIDERED, ADJUDGED AND ORDERED BY THE COURT THAT THE DEFENDANT


A. ( ) is ( ) years of age and is financially able to employ counsel.

B. ( ) Shall retain counsel within twenty (20) days because there are deadlines for filing motions and defense, and ifthose deadlines are missed, the legal issues and defenses that may be raised will be waived.


c. ( x ) Shall appear in person at a pre-trial hearing on March 17 ,2014

at 11: 00 a m. which is also the Omnibus Date, before which all motions or demands shall be filed. If the Defendant has an attorney prior to the pre-trial hearing in this matter, the attorney shall appear for the Defendant at the pre-trial hearing and the Defendant is not ordered to appear. Discovery
is due thrity(30) days after the first pre-trial.

D. ( ) Based upon the evidence presented, the Court finds that the Defendant is a risk to appear at future hearings.

E. ( ) Based upon the evidence presented, the Court finds that Defendant is a danger to the safety and welfare of the general public.


F. ( ) Defendant is currently on probation or parole. Pursuant to IC 35-33-8-6, bail is taken under advisement for a period not to exceed fifteen( 15) days pending the filing of a probation violation in

G. ( ) Bail under advisement hours for

H. ( x ) Final Pretrial and plea deadline are May 19 ,20 14 at 3: 00 P m. and ,Defendant is ordered to appear at Final Pretrial ifthere is no plea agreement filed.

I. ( x) Jury Trial on June 9 ,20 14 8:30 a m.

at :'!'Defendant is ordered to be present at said hearing.

J. ( ) Defendant shall be placed on SERCC and abide by all rules of said program.
K. ( ) Defendant shall comply with Department of Child Services and follow all recommendations.

L . ( ) Defendant shall abide by all rules of probation and submit to testing when requested.

INITIAL HEARING ORDER DEFENDANT _

N. ( x) Defendant shall be released form the custody of the Dearborn County Sheriff:

( ) Upon a written promise to appear.
( x ) Bail Bond of$ 50,000 cash only and $50,000 surety only

( ) Previously posted bail of$ which is continued.

Bail is subject to revocation and forfeiture and the defendant shall be rearrested upon violation of any condition of bail including:

1. x ) Failure to appear in Court when ordered or commission of a subsequent criminal act.

2. ( ) Defendant shall not operate a vehicle pursuant to re suspension while this case is pending.

3. ( Defendant shall have no contact, directly or indirectly, with

while this case is pending.

4. ( Defendant shall not consume alcoholic beverages or illegal controlled substances and shall submit to drug or alcohol testing when requested by any law enforcement officer.

5. ( Bail cannot be posted until defendant provides to Court proof of reporting date to in-patientJout-patient alcohol,drug,or mental heath treatment facility, name of supervising counselor, execute waiver of confidentiality and fully comply with treatment plan.

6.( x ) Defendant shall not move his/her residence from the State of Indiana without
permission of the Court.


7. ( x Defendant shall notify the Court of any change of residential or mailing address within forty-eight (48) hours of the change occuring.

8. ( x Defendant shall maintain contact with his/her attorney.

9. Bail cannot be posted until defendant provides address to Court.

10. ( Defendant shall surrender driver's license to court on or before

O. ( x ) 1. ( ) is appointed public defender. Under Indiana Code IC 35-33-7-6, Defendant shall pay $100 for a felony or $50 for a misdemeanor public defender within ninety (90) days of this order.

2. ( x ) Request for public defender denied or

P. ( x ) defendant I 8 husband makes $23/hour



DATE: 2-5-14 Hon. Jonathon N. Cleary, Judge Dearborn Superior Court No 1


8 comments:

Anonymous said...

American Academy of Family Physicians article on Spinal Compression Fractures

http://www.aafp.org/afp/2004/0101/p111.html

citizen concerned for justice said...

Having read the of probable cause affidavit, I’m confused with how the injuries to the thoracic vertebral body, as described in the affidavit, could be attributed to a hyperextension injury of the spine. Hyperextension describes the movement when the back would be bent backward, resulting in an exaggerated arch to the back. If you look at a side view of the thoracic spine, the vertebral body is the large, cylindrical portion of the spine that is positioned in front of the spinal cord. Hyperextension of the spine actually relieves pressure from the vertebral body; it does not result in greater force being placed upon it.
A hyperextension injury of a normal spine is the result of significant force, a high impact injury that is much greater than can generally be applied by a middle age nurse attempting to free an individual from her walker. A hyperextension injury fractures the bony elements of the spinal column that surround the spinal cord. These elements are referred to as the pedicles (the walls of the spinal canal) and the lamina (the roof of the spinal canal.) There is no mention in the affidavit that these areas of the spine were injured. Furthermore, a force of the magnitude to cause a hyperextension injury to the vertebral body would likely result in visible bruising to the overlying skin. It is noted in the affidavit that there is no visible bruising.
On the other hand, an extremely common injury to the thoracic vertebral body is a vertebral fracture as a result of osteoporosis. I found it interesting that the vertebral body is described as normal bone matrix, qualifying the statement to state there was no evidence of metastatic cancer or infection/ abscess. Was there no evidence of osteoporosis? A fracture of this type would most likely be associated with osteoporosis. That association is so high that I was greatly surprised that the report did not mention the absence of osteoporosis as a significant finding.
Finally, the conclusion is that cause of death is due to blunt force trauma to the thoracic spine. I feel that statement deserves further scrutiny. If hyperextension of the thoracic spine did occur, this injury would not have resulted in the immediate death of the individual as described in the affidavit.
I need to call into question the interpretation by the witnesses of what transpired. Ms Lewis describes Ms Hess as “counting chest compressions trying to wake her (Ms Scalf) up. This description of counting chest compressions is much more commonly employed in the performance of CPR, and is not a common modality for awakening an individual whether in a nursing home or in a private residence.
Finally, EMS describes “a lot of vomiting”, something that is not mentioned by the witnesses.
My purpose in placing my thoughts on this blog is to emphasize that there exists a reasonable doubt that the actions as interpreted in this affidavit were subject to inaccuracies. To speak in defense of the witnesses, the actions necessary to initiate basic life support can certainly be interpreted as “abusive” and “violent” when observed by a lay person.
I would ask that a member of the Dearborn County legal community step forward to address some of the doubts raised by my comments above. Realizing there may be circumstances surrounding Ms Scalf’s demise that can easily address my questions; these doubts can only be addressed if the questions are asked.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the above observation(s).

Anonymous said...

"On January 10, 2014, Detectives McKay, Beetz and Schneider, CSI Wally Lewis, and your affiant met with Dr. Dean Hawley at Indiana University Health Pathology Laboratory in Indianapolis. CSI Lewis transported the section of Dionne's backbone that Dr. Eliason had removed during the autopsy."
Why did the county pay 5 officers to transport a section of backbone to Indianapolis?

Anonymous said...

Is CSI Lewis any relation to the "witness" Lewis?

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, after the Brewington fiasco one can't help but question the wisdom and reasoning behind cases which cases are pursued by this prosecutors office.

Anonymous said...

And the body of Dionne Scalf has been cremated.
Sure hope that autopsy was more complete than what showed up in the Probable Cause Affidavit.

Mo Farissier said...

Wow and my bail was 125000 for a f3 Dearborn likes that extreme and unfair bail amounts ain't that against your rights