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Press Release

Former Employee of Care Facility Sentenced for Criminal Negligence of a Vulnerable Adult

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
Defendant Left Vulnerable Adult in Vehicle While Making Food Deliveries

            WASHINGTON – Kelly Barry, 25, of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, was sentenced today in Superior Court for one count of criminal negligence of a vulnerable adult, announced U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves for the District of Columbia, and Daniel W. Lucas, Inspector General for the District of Columbia, made the announcement.

            Superior Court Judge Heidi Pasichow accepted Barry’s guilty plea today and ordered 180 days in jail, with a portion of that time suspended, 14 months of supervised probation, 90 hours of community service, and ordered that Barry be prohibited from working with anyone who cannot care for themselves.

            According to court documents, Barry, was a former Direct Support Professional for Community Options, Inc., a residential facility for persons with disabilities, located in Rockville, Maryland. Barry’s job duties included taking individuals on outings in the local community, such as bowling, etc. for approximately three to four hours a day, five times per week. Between June and October 2022, Barry provided care to a vulnerable adult, who is non-verbal, autistic, and unable to care for himself.  Instead of going to various community outings, Barry used the Community Options van to make food deliveries with the vulnerable adult.

            On October 19, 2022, Barry utilized the Community Options van to pick up the vulnerable adult.  That day, Barry drove to Washington, D.C., and made a total of five food deliveries.  While making the final delivery, Barry exited the vehicle and left the vulnerable adult unattended.  After the delivery was completed, Barry observed a masked individual steal the vehicle while the vulnerable adult was still inside the van. During his initial call to 911, Barry failed to mention that the vulnerable adult was in the stolen vehicle and subsequently failed to notify the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department officer who arrived on scene of the same. After, Barry informed his employer that he did not notify police that the vulnerable adult was still in the vehicle, and the company advised him to provide that information to the authorities.  However, Barry did not provide this information during his subsequent notification.  Approximately three and a half hours after the theft of the van, the vulnerable adult was found by the Prince George’s County Police Department, barefoot and wandering in the middle of traffic on the I-495 Capital Beltway.  The Prince George’s County Police Department transported the vulnerable adult to a local hospital for treatment.

            This prosecution is indicative of the continued collaboration between the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the D.C. Office of the Inspector General (D.C. OIG) to protect vulnerable adults.  The D.C. OIG operates the District’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU), which is statutorily responsible for investigating and prosecuting District Medicaid provider fraud as well as abuse or neglect of residents in health care facilities and board and care facilities and of beneficiaries in noninstitutional or other settings.  The government urges the public to provide tips and assistance to stop health care fraud and abuse, neglect, or exploitation of vulnerable adults. If you have information about individuals committing these types of offenses, please call the D.C. Office of the Inspector General at 202-724-TIPS [202-724-8477].

            In announcing the guilty plea, U.S. Attorney Graves, and Inspector General Lucas commended the work of those who investigated the case from the D.C. OIG MFCU.  They also acknowledged the efforts of both the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department and Prince George’s County Police Department for their initial response.  They commended the work of Special Assistant United States Attorney Jason Facci, on detail from the D.C. OIG, who prosecuted the case.

Updated November 2, 2023

Elder Justice
Press Release Number: 23-669