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Caregivers charged in death of a woman

Breaking News: Caregivers charged in death of a woman
Breaking News: Caregivers charged in death of a woman

Lancaster City Police have charged two caregivers from Alliance Home Help in connection with the death of a woman in their care last year. On Sunday, 5 May last year officers and emergency medical personnel were called to the apartment of 24 year old Fantasia Robinson for a welfare check, according to the LCPD. Robinson was found “unresponsive and pinned between her wheelchair and a cabinet” by the morning shift caregiver.

Robinson was transported to Lancaster Regional Medical Center initially. She had received severe burns on her abdomen and upper legs and was transferred to Temple University Hospital Burn Unit to receive treatment for those burns. Medical records, according to the police, indicate her burns were the result of a hot liquid.

Robinson died at Temple University Hospital on 13 June 2013, according to her obituary. The Philadelphia Medical Examiner’s Office performed an autopsy. Dr. Gary Collins ruled that the cause of death was officially due to complications from the burns. The manner of her death, he ruled, was accidental.

LCPD Detective Sergeant Sonja Stebbins was contacted by the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General (AG), Bureau of Criminal Investigations shortly before Robinson died regarding an investigation they were initiating related to Robinson’s home healthcare provider. The LCPD’s Special Investigations Unit then began an investigation into the cause and manner of the injuries to Robinson led by Det. Sgt. Stebbins. The AG’s office had stated that Robinson was critical and expected to die due to her injuries, which were complicated by her degenerative disease.

Through their investigation, the police learned that Robinson was supposed to receive 24 hour care, seven days a week due to her medical condition. Her care was being provided by Alliance Home Help located in the Moore Business Park on Eden Road in Manheim Township.

Her arrangement, according to the police, had been round the clock care with caregivers having a 12 hour shift. The changeover time was 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. A day shift caregiver never showed up at 7 a.m. on Saturday, 4 May 2013. Then at 9 a.m. the night shift caregiver had called off so no one showed up at 7 p.m. No replacement caregiver was called in and as a result the shifts went without coverage. “This left a 24 hour a day care dependent person without assistance for approximately 24 hours,” the police investigation determined according to a Department press release.

When a replacement can not be found it was the duty of the Director of In Home Care or the Care Coordinator to assume those shifts. Neither of the individuals in those positions did so. The Care Coordinator at that time was Stacy Wallick, 43 of Marietta. The Director of In Home Care was 47 year old Duane Cecil, of Leola.

Both Stacy Wallick and Duane Cecil have been charged with Neglect of a Care-Dependent Person (F-1), Involuntary Manslaughter (M-1), and Recklessly Endangering Another Person (M-2).

Wallick and Cecil both turned themselves in at District Judge John C. Winters’ office for arraignment. Bail was set for both today at $50,000 unsecured.

Wallick, according to her LinkedIn, is has been the Care Coordinator at Alliance Home Health since January 2013. She expects to receive her Associate of Arts degree in Human Service Management this year from the University of Phoenix.

Robinson had lived in the 500 block of Second Street. She was a 2006 graduate of Penn Manor High School. She also graduated Lancaster County Career and Technology Center. She studied graphic design/commercial art at Millersville University.

She left behind her father, David, and a then 15 month old daughter Arden. Her daughter would be eight this year. She also left behind three brothers and two sisters.

Alliance Home Help has been in business since 2010. The company provides caregivers for adults, aged 18 to 59 ½, with disabilities. The company professes to provide personal care, respite care and companion care.

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