The elderly nursing home resident who was shown being beaten in his room in a video that went viral two months ago has died, his family confirmed this week.
What are the details?
In late May, horrifying footage of a young person beating a helpless elderly person began circulation online, and the disturbing nature of the video sparked widespread outcry and an investigation. It even grabbed the attention of President Donald Trump, who tweeted, “Is this even possible to believe? Can this be for real? Where is this nursing home, how is the victim doing?”
The victim was identified as 75-year-old Norman Bledsoe, a resident at the Westwood Rehabilitation Nursing Center in Detroit. Shortly after video of the attack went viral, Bledsoe’s roommate at the facility, 20-year-old Jaden Hayden, was arrested in connection with the beating.
Authorities said at the time that Bledsoe was hospitalized for “non-life-threatening” injuries.
The Detroit News reported that those injuries included “four broken fingers, broken ribs, and a broken jaw.” Mr. Bledsoe died Monday morning.
The victim’s nephew, Kevin Bledsoe, told the outlet of his uncle, “His eating habits went downhill after (the alleged assault on May 15), and he lost quite a bit of weight.” Kevin Bledsoe noted that the family had been prohibiting from visiting Norman Bledsoe at the nursing home following his release from the hospital, due to COVID-19 restrictions.
“We finally were able to see him last week,” Kevin said. “He wasn’t doing very good. I guess there just wasn’t anything else they could do for him.”
The Bledsoe family is reportedly moving forward with a lawsuit against Westwood.
Hayden is accused of not only recording himself beating up Bledsoe, but posting the footage online and stealing the elderly man’s credit card following the attack. The accused reportedly has mental issues, and is due in court Thursday to determine whether he’s mentally fit to stand trial.
WJBK-TV pointed out that the 20-year-old was placed in the long term care facility after being diagnosed with COVID-19 due to Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s (D) controversial policy of sending coronavirus patients “to nursing homes as a way to isolate them from the rest of the state to avoid spreading the virus further.”