Dementia Patient Dies After Wheelchair Rolls Down Flight of Stairs

In the early morning hours last Sunday, an 86-year old man, reportedly suffering from dementia, rolled down a short flight of stairs in his wheelchair at a nursing home and died.

The man went through at least one security door, eventually getting to the area where he suffered his injuries.

Because the man died from other than natural causes, his death is being investigated by police, who are saying unofficially that the death was almost surely an accident.

Police say there is a very narrow timeline between the last time the wheelchair-bound man was seen by attendants and his time of death — 20 minutes or less. They also say the alarm system the nursing home uses to let them know if a patient has left a certain area was working and did perform as it was supposed to. For more, read the story.

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Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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