Office of the Attorney General
Community Alternatives of Kentucky Employee Charged with Abuse of Mentally Disabled Resident in Somerset
Attorney General Jack Conway today announced the indictment and arrest of a former employee of Community Alternatives of Kentucky-Somerset in connection with the abuse of a mentally disabled male resident. Officers with the Burnside Police Department arrested 33-year-old James S. Smith yesterday on a charge of knowing abuse of an adult, a Class C felony that carries a penalty of between five to ten years imprisonment. The charges against Smith stem from an investigation by General Conway's Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse Control.
A Pulaski County grand jury indicted Smith earlier this month for allegedly abusing a 29-year-old mentally challenged male resident in March of 2011 when he improperly restrained and kicked the resident. Smith was lodged in the Pulaski County Detention Center. His bail was set at $20,000 cash or property.
"Investigating and prosecuting crimes involving the abuse of adults residing in facilities across this state remains a top priority for my office," General Conway said. "I am pleased that our investigative efforts have resulted in an indictment in this case."
The prosecution of this case is being handled by the office of Pulaski County Commonwealth's Attorney Eddie Montgomery.
Community Alternatives of Kentucky, Inc. is a for-profit company with several locations throughout the Commonwealth. The company provides residential services and supports to mentally disabled individuals. Smith was a staff member at Community Alternatives of Kentucky's Somerset facility at the time of the offense, which is alleged to have occurred at one of the company's Adult Day Training facilities. Smith resigned following a report of the alleged incident.
Community Alternatives of Kentucky reported the allegations of abuse to the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services. In April of 2011, the Attorney General's Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse Control received notification from the Cabinet's Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) that the allegations of abuse had been substantiated. The Attorney General's Office launched its investigation following such notification from DCBS.
A charge is merely an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.