Patient’s Suit Alleges Rape at Mental Hospital - Diverse Health

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Patient’s Suit Alleges Rape at Mental Hospital

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by The Associated Press

HELENA, Mont. — A woman who was criminally committed to Montana State Hospital has sued the state, alleging that she was sexually assaulted and impregnated by another patient at the psychiatric facility.

In the lawsuit filed in District Court in Helena, the woman said the hospital failed to supervise her adequately, leading to the rape that resulted in the birth of a child, Lee Newspapers of Montana reported.

A Department of Public Health and Human Services spokesman declined to comment on the litigation.

The woman was sent to the hospital by a judge after being accused of committing a crime. She was identified only by her initials in her lawsuit and the nature of the charge could not be immediately determined.

The lawsuit states that she had sexual delusions and intrusive sexual thoughts. State hospital officials should have known about those mental health issues that made her vulnerable to sexual abuse by male patients, her lawsuit states.

The woman was found in a bathroom with a male patient in 2010 and was placed under more strict supervision for about two weeks, the legal action said.

Her medical records indicate that other patients reported to staff that the woman was having sexual contact with male patients as early as spring 2011. She became pregnant in late 2011.

The woman accuses the hospital of negligence, denial of the right to a safe environment, failure to supervise and infliction of emotional distress.

She is seeking $1.5 million in damages to help care for the child who is being raised by the plaintiff’s mother.

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