Commonwealth Journal

September 19, 2013

Oakwood staffer arraigned

by Heather Tomlinson
Commonwealth Journal

Somerset —

An Oakwood employee accused of provoking a client to punch another client appeared in court this week. 
Coty King, 22, of Pine Knot, Ky., at left, appeared in Pulaski District Court Wednesday and pleaded not guilty to two counts of knowing neglect of a vulnerable adult.
King was arrested Monday at Oakwood after the Kentucky Attorney General’s Office received a report that King had allegedly convinced a developmentally disabled adult patient at Oakwood to hit another disabled patient. King also allegedly recorded video of the incident on his cell phone.
Personnel at Oakwood notified an investigator with the Office of the Attorney General’s Department of Criminal Investigators Monday morning after learning about the alleged incident.
Jill Midkiff, executive director of the Office of Communications for CHFS, sent the following statement to the Commonwealth Journal:
“Immediately after learning of the alleged actions of Coty King, Bluegrass notified all appropriate law enforcement and licensure agencies. King was arrested yesterday as he reported for work. The Cabinet’s Office of the Inspector General is conducting a full investigation, which is ongoing.... The Office of the Attorney General has also initiated an investigation.”
Midkiff confirmed that 12 staffers and three supervisors were pulled from duty. However, she stressed that CHFS does not suspect that all those individuals were involved, but were pulled from duty as a safety precaution “in case even one is determined to have knowledge of the incident.”
Pulaski County Attorney Martin Hatfield said King’s bond conditions remain the same at $10,000 cash or property. He is still lodged in the Pulaski County Detention Center. A preliminary hearing for King is scheduled for next week. Knowing neglect of a vulnerable adult is a Class C felony punishable by up to five to 10 years in prison.