CASE UPDATE: Erie Aide who Poured Scalding Water on Disabled Patient Pleads Guilty to Felony Charges
HARRISBURG — Attorney General Josh Shapiro today announced that an Erie man who poured scalding water on a disabled man, severely burning him, pleaded guilty to felony charges.
Akeem Nixon, 27, of German Street, Erie, plead guilty to neglect of a care-dependent person and aggravated assault — first-degree felonies – as a result of the incident which happened last June at Lakeshore Community Services in Erie. The victim, a 38-year-old man with cerebral palsy, was hospitalized for 17 days and suffered second-degree burns over 20 percent of his body.
“This defendant assaulted a disabled man in his care with scalding water,” Attorney General Shapiro said. “We’re holding him accountable for his crimes. Protecting care-dependent Pennsylvanians from neglect and assaults like in this case is a high priority of my office.”
Nixon was charged in November 2017 based on medical evidence of the burns, statements from the victim and safety protocols in place at the residence where the victim lived. Investigators determined the victim could not have heated water to a temperature able to cause the severe burns himself. The victim also verbally indicated that Nixon was the person responsible for his injuries. Nixon was suspended from his job the day after the incident, and did not return to work.
“Strong collaboration between Erie police and our agents made this arrest possible,” Attorney General Shapiro said. “Our Medicaid Fraud Control Unit’s Neglect Team works to protect seniors and vulnerable citizens, and will pursue justice against anyone who harms a care-dependent Pennsylvanian.”
Sentencing is scheduled for August 9. The case was prosecuted by Deputy Attorney General Nathan Giunta of the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit Neglect Team. The office has recently brought felony neglect and other charges against a Luzerne County charge nurse, a Berks County man, and a Philadelphia nurse for failing to properly care for people entrusted to their care.
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