A New Jersey nursing home employee has been arrested for allegedly assaulting a terminally ill 87-year-old woman, who died two days later. The alleged attack was captured on a so-called "nanny cam."
Julia C. Galvan, 59, of North Bergen, was arrested on charges of assault and abuse and neglect of the elderly, and faces up to five years in prison. The alleged assault occurred at the Harborage, a 245-bed nursing home on River Road.
According to police, Galvan struck the woman three to four times on top of the head on Jan. 15, and the assault was captured by a surveillance camera.
North Bergen Police Lt. Frank Canella said the victim’s daughter placed the camera in the room because she was suspicious about her mother’s treatment.
“She suspected the staff prior, concerning the treatment of her mother and suspicious marks on her mother,” said Canella.
According to Canella, the daughter contacted police on Feb. 23 after she discovered footage of her mother’s assault on the video camera.
The victim was in hospice care for a terminal illness, and police do not believe that her death two days after being attacked was a result of the assault.
Police did not release the victim's identity. Her lawyer, Eugene Horn, will hold a press conference with the victim's family on Monday, March 21.
Galvan told police that she assaulted the victim because she was “stressed out.”
The police are still working through the surveillance tapes, which cover an entire week from Jan. 11 to Jan. 17.
According to Medicare data, the Harborage home received 2 out of 5 stars for quality measures, 5 out of 5 stars for health inspections, and 1 out of 5 stars for nursing home staffing.
Harborage said it "takes this issue very seriously. We have a zero tolerance policy with respect to the improper treatment of any of our residents. As a result, the employee has been terminated and is no longer employed by our institution.”