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Adult Care Home Operator In Las Vegas Charged With Abuse

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A Las Vegas, Nevada, adult care home operator was arrested last week on elder abuse charges. Christopher Michael Childers was charged with elder abuse, elder neglect and criminal neglect of a patient with substantial bodily harm.

The arrest was made by officers attached to the Las Vegas Police Department’s Abuse and Neglect Detail. That agency had conducted a three-week investigation into allegations of abuse and neglect.

Childers is the owner and operator of Desert Palms adult care facility in Las Vegas. According to investigators, the home provided care for ten residents, although it is licensed for only six residents under Nevada state law.

One of the home’s residents suffered from serious bedsores, according to the police report. The bedsores required prolonged hospitalization and surgical intervention, and resulted in permanent scarring.

Last week, police investigators also determined that two other residents of Desert Palms had been grabbed, pushed and shoved by Childers. One sustained bruising on his wrist.

Other residents told investigators that they were required to remain in their rooms at all times except during meals. They reported being afraid that they would be punished if they left their rooms without permission, and that residents were isolated from one another.

Childers’ attorney responded to reports of the investigation by pointing out that Childers and his family have been operating adult care homes in northern Nevada for more than a decade. He challenged the claim that Childers had more than the allowed six residents by asserting that there were fewer than six who required any assistance; according to the attorney, the other residents were “completely able to care for themselves.”

Childers’ attorney also claims that the investigation was motivated by anger that the boarding home operator had testified in support of another care home operator who was charged with failing to secure the proper license. In that case, the care home operator was apparently acquitted; Childers’ attorney represented the care home operator in the earlier case, and claims that the current investigation was begun in retaliation for Childers’ testimony.

State laws on elder abuse vary widely. In Arizona, the allegations against Childers could also have led to criminal charges for elder abuse and elder neglect. In addition, Arizona law provides for a special civil cause of action. Childers’ residents could bring a lawsuit against him for recovery of their actual damages (including, for example, medical costs and pain and suffering) plus up to three times the amount of those damages.

Arizona law also imposes a duty on caretakers, social workers and others to report instances of abuse or neglect. Such reports must be made to the Adult Protective Services office for the county in which the incidents occurred, or to the local police department or sheriff’s office.

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Robert B. Fleming


Robert Fleming is a Fellow of both the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys. He has been certified as a Specialist in Estate and Trust Law by the State Bar of Arizona‘s Board of Legal Specialization, and he is also a Certified Elder Law Attorney by the National Elder Law Foundation. Robert has a long history of involvement in local, state and national organizations. He is most proud of his instrumental involvement in the Special Needs Alliance, the premier national organization for lawyers dealing with special needs trusts and planning.

Robert has two adult children, two young grandchildren and a wife of over fifty years. He is devoted to all of them. He is also very fond of Rosalind Franklin (his office companion corgi), and his homebound cat Muninn. He just likes people, their pets and their stories.

Elizabeth N.R. Friman


Elizabeth Noble Rollings Friman is a principal and licensed fiduciary at Fleming & Curti, PLC. Elizabeth enjoys estate planning and helping families navigate trust and probate administrations. She is passionate about the fiduciary work that she performs as a trustee, personal representative, guardian, and conservator. Elizabeth works with CPAs, financial professionals, case managers, and medical providers to tailor solutions to complex family challenges. Elizabeth is often called upon to serve as a neutral party so that families can avoid protracted legal conflict. Elizabeth relies on the expertise of her team at Fleming & Curti, and as the Firm approaches its third decade, she is proud of the culture of care and consideration that the Firm embodies. Finding workable solutions to sensitive and complex family challenges is something that Elizabeth and the Fleming & Curti team do well.

Amy F. Matheson


Amy Farrell Matheson has worked as an attorney at Fleming & Curti since 2006. A member of the Southern Arizona Estate Planning Council, she is primarily responsible for estate planning and probate matters.

Amy graduated from Wellesley College with a double major in political science and English. She is an honors graduate of Suffolk University Law School and has been admitted to practice in Arizona, Massachusetts, New York, and the District of Columbia.

Prior to joining Fleming & Curti, Amy worked for American Public Television in Boston, and with the international trade group at White & Case, LLP, in Washington, D.C.

Amy’s husband, Tom, is an astronomer at NOIRLab and the Head of Time Domain Services, whose main project is ANTARES. Sadly, this does not involve actual time travel. Amy’s twin daughters are high school students; Finn, her Irish Red and White Setter, remains a puppy at heart.

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Matthew M. Mansour


Matthew is a law clerk who recently earned his law degree from the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law. His undergraduate degree is in psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Matthew has had a passion for advocacy in the Tucson community since his time as a law student representative in the Workers’ Rights Clinic. He also has worked in both the Pima County Attorney’s Office and the Pima County Public Defender’s Office. He enjoys playing basketball, caring for his cat, and listening to audiobooks narrated by the authors.