The employer of a nurse killed in CT faces a $160,000 fine

A major health care provider faces a $163,627 fine in connection with the killing of a nurse at a Connecticut nursing home.

The Department of Labor announced charges against Elara Caring in connection with the death of Joyce Grayson on Wednesday.

According to authorities, on October 28, 2023, Grayon, 63, was working at a nursing home in Willimantic when she was attacked and killed by Michael Reese. Reese, a 39-year-old convicted rapist, was charged with murder.

“Elara Caring failed in its legal duty to protect employees from workplace injuries by failing to take effective measures to protect employees from a known hazard, and it cost a worker his life,” said Charles D. McGrevy , division director of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, said in a statement.

“For the well-being of its employees, Elara must develop, implement and maintain necessary protective measures, such as a comprehensive workplace violence prevention program. Workplace safety is not a privilege; It is every worker’s right.”

Grayson worked as a nurse for 36 years, including 26 years with the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. She was supposed to give medication to Reese, who was on parole after serving 14 years in prison for stabbing and raping a woman in 2006.

Reach House, a halfway house for sex offenders where host sister Joyce Grayson was found dead, is pictured November 21, 2023 in Willimantic, Connecticut.

According to OSHA, Elara Caring “exposed home health care workers to workplace violence by patients who exhibited aggressive behavior and were known to pose a danger to others,” even though the company did not have a loss prevention plan in place.

Reese strangled Grayson to death and struck her in the head and torso while attempting to rob and sexually assault her, police said. According to investigators, he admitted the crime in a phone call shortly afterwards.

“I will accept the first offer they make to me as long as the allegations are true,” he said, according to an arrest warrant. “I’ve already come to terms with the fact that it’s the right thing for me.”

Anna Harden

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