A Warwick woman who is facing a civil-fraud suit for what the Rhode Island Supreme Court has termed “a troubling scenario of money, deceit and financial abuse” of a man who died at age 98 has now become the focus of two more court cases involving a 94-year-old man who is in a locked dementia ward of a Coventry nursing home.
One of the court cases charges the woman, Carel Callahan Bainum, with criminal trespass at the Coventry Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center where Michael Koczan, an Air Force veteran who suffers from severe cognitive impairment and a host of physical problems, has resided for the past several months. Warwick’s onetime animal control supervisor, Bainum, 62, has pleaded not guilty and is demanding a jury trial.
The other case is a guardianship that last week, after a testy hearing, culminated with a judge giving Koczan’s daughter control over every aspect of her father’s life — financial and health-care decisions as well as decisions over whom he has relationships with. The court made this ruling after it heard testimony about the disruptive and allegedly dangerous influence Bainum has had over Koczan.
The guardianship petition was originally filed by the state’s mental-health advocate, H. Reed Cosper, who says in court papers that Koczan “is being exploited” by Bainum, a person “who has a history of financial and emotional exploitation of elderly men, particularly veterans.”
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Warwick Woman Under Fire in Court, Again, Regarding 94-Year-Old Nursing Home Patient
Supreme Court Upholds