Three hospital staff were arrested after being accused of leaving a quadriplegic patient lying on the ground at a park, Arizona police said.
The incident occurred on June 14, according to an Aug. 30 news release by the police department.
The man had originally gone to the hospital after having issues with his catheter, FOX 10 reported.
The man was was rolled out in a wheelchair by hospital staff and was “left lying on the ground of a park,” police said. The hospital said the staff were security guards.
He was found covered in ants, police said.
“Just pushed me all the way across the street on the wheelchair, threw me off the wheelchair on the floor at the park. They walked away,” the man told FOX 10.
The man’s mother came to the park and called 911, the release said. The man was sent to another hospital for follow-up care.
Police were called on July 22 and responded to the “vulnerable adult abuse call.”
“Valleywise Health takes all instances concerning patient safety very seriously. While these 3 security officers have been placed on administrative leave, it is important to remember that those charged with criminal offenses are presumed innocent. This incident is an opportunity to reevaluate all of our processes to ensure our health system is providing the highest level of care for each and every patient, even under the most difficult and challenging circumstances,” Valley Wise Health said in a statement to McClatchy News.
The man spent six days in the hospital and underwent surgery for his original catheter issue, FOX 10 reported.
The three security guards, Luis Garcia, 53, Eric Espinoza, 39, and Kalen Powell, 37, were arrested and booked into the Maricopa County Jail on adult abuse charges, the release said.