Male Nurse Arrested For Raping Female #Hacienda Patient in Vegetative State #NathanSutherland
A male nurse has been arrested for the sexual assault of a woman who gave birth while in a long-term vegetative state.
The 29-year-old victim — who police said “was not in a position to give consent” gave birth late last month to a baby boy, sparking an investigation.
The suspect identified as Nathan Sutherland, age 36 faces charges of one count of sexual assault and one count of vulnerable adult abuse.
Sutherland’s DNA was matched to that of the baby, leading to the arrest.
Sutherland is a “licensed practical nurse who was responsible for providing care to the victim during this time the sexual assault occurred,” Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams said.
The victim’s family said in a statement that she “has significant intellectual disabilities as a result of seizures very early in her childhood.” The victim “does not speak but has some ability to move her limbs, head and neck” and “responds to sound and is able to make facial gestures,” the statement said.
“We can’t always choose how we come into this life, but what we can choose to do as a community is love this child, and that’s what we have the opportunity to do,” he said.
The CEO of the nursing facility resigned following the scandal, according to a statement sent to media.