State files complaint after woman's death in 'deplorable' assisted living home

Retirement home investigation
How to spot signs of abuse in retirement homes
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INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) — The doors closed at Roland's Retirement Club in Speedway last November.

It's where just a few weeks earlier, Speedway police found a woman dead inside her apartment.

The conditions in which the woman was allegedly found has the state investigating now.

A police report says officers found Rosetta May, 45, dead at Roland’s Retirement Center last September, lying in her own vomit.

According to the police report, investigators think May had been dead for some time. That's because they found cockroaches crawling from her body.

"Obviously the conditions at this facility were deplorable," said Aaron Negangard, a chief deputy in the Indiana Attorney General's office.

A complaint filed this week by the attorney general noted police discovered "cockroaches coming out of Resident Rm's nose and mouth."

According to the same complaint, the State Department of Health had been to the facility a month before and found "multiple bugs crawling on the bathroom counter/sink, entry rug and near the ceiling and above the entry door."

"Any time we have an opportunity to hold people accountable who are putting those lives in jeopardy, we will," said Negangard.

According to the complaint, Cynthia Jones, the facility's administrator, had stopped coming to work in early 2015 but allowed the facility's owner to use her license so they could stay open.

The state says the facility's owner never hired another administrator to replace Jones.

"This is why you have rules in place, that people can't let someone else use their license because there's no accountability," said Negangard. "When you don't have accountability, you have a very vulnerable population of elderly and disabled people living in deplorable conditions."

The state is hoping to pull Jones' license for good. A hearing to do that is set for March 27.

Eyewitness News asked Cynthia Jones for comment. When we identified ourselves, she said, "no, I'm not talking to anyone," and hung up the phone.

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