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Mental patient rapes another in institution

Date Posted: 2007-09-06

A female patient at a central Okinawa mental institution is bringing charges against a male patient who raped her while she was in confinement.
Prefecture Police investigating the case say the woman was in her hospital room about 5 p.m. August 22nd when a male in-patient entered the room and attacked her. She was alone in the four-person room at the time of the rape. The rape was still in progress when a nurse entered the room and summoned help. It took several staff members to subdue the man and pull him off the woman.
The male patient at the home for the mentally ill was restrained and placed in isolation, then moved to another hospital five days later. Police say they’re investigating the assailant’s criminal liability, given his mental state. They will determine if the man is capable of being charged with the crime.
The female patient, with aid of her family, is demanding an apology and has filed a legal claim for damages. The 60-bed mental facility has separate male and female wards, separated by a corridor and nursing station. Officials say patients can move freely in the corridor, but are not permitted to enter the wing housing members of the opposite sex. Doors between the wards are closed at night.
Facility officials say “We have one nurse for every 15 patients, and we operate perfectly within Ministry of Health and Welfare rules, and we have cameras between the female and male rooms.” Still, they acknowledge they weren’t able to protect the victim in this case, and say they’re sorry. Officials say there will be a reorganization of safety and security procedures.

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