Kentucky

Homicide wasn't first violence at group home

PAINT LICK — The death of a disabled resident at a Central Kentucky group home wasn't the first violent act reported there.

According to records obtained by The Richmond Register from the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services, residents at the Garrard County home for the mentally disabled have acted violently in at least nine separate incidents since the home opened in August 2010.

The newspaper requested the records after the death last month of Shawn Akridge, 35. A murder charge against another resident was dropped, but Kentucky State Police Trooper Chris Lanham said it was a homicide, and detectives are investigating.

State police have said the case would be sent to the Garrard County grand jury, which meets again July 20, for a possible indictment.

The home is run by Brentwood, Tenn.-based Community Ties of America. A call on Sunday to the corporate headquarters of the company was not returned.

Two previous cases of violence at the home ended with residents being taken to an emergency room, according to documents that the Register received through an open-records request.

One resident was taken to the hospital on April 19 after being hit in the jaw by another resident, according to a staff member's report. The injured jaw swelled up, but it was not broken.

The other resident was taken to the hospital Jan. 19 with a cut on his head that required three staples. A staff report said there were varying accounts of how the injury occurred.

The reports also listed less-serious cases in which residents were violent. Reports show that residents have punched and smacked each other, broken windows, punched holes in walls and injured themselves.

The group home houses no more than three or four people at a time. It is not a state-run home, but it does receive state and federal funding.

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