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Stillwater Police Investigate Abuse At Two Group Homes

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Stillwater police are searching for two suspects wanted in connection with the abuse of multiple clients at two separate group homes.

Officers said the suspects are still at large, while their alleged crimes date back to mid-January.

The first case happened January 15th involving 48-year old Stacey Dionne Taylor.

The hospital called on behalf of the victim.

  • “Dispatch: Stillwater Police Department.
  • Hospital: Hi, this is __ from the ER. I have a patient here a 31-year old female who lives in a group home that's been brought in, has wounds to her face, and like they said there's a concern of abuse.”

Stillwater police said the victim, 31-year old Susan Shiply was living at one of the locations operated by Stillwater Group Homes.

Investigators say Shiply could not communicate, and with limited mobility, she used her arms to move herself across the floor.

Doctors found bruises on her face, neck and eyelids.

Investigators report Taylor told them she was the only staff to have contact with the victim at the time of her injuries.

Shiply passed away days later of unrelated causes, but officers said they soon discovered she had signs of possible strangulation.

“That damage is certainty, in an autopsy examination is discoverable,” said Stillwater Police Department Captain Kyle Gibbs.

Taylor claims she tripped over Shiply, accidentally kneeing her in the face, causing the injury.

Officers said her statement and Shiply's severe injures don't add up.

Then on the 25th, police get a report of another abuse case at a different group home on Westbrook Drive.

  • “Dispatch: Ok, just briefly tell me what's happened.
  • Caller: I work at Supported Community Lifestyles, we had a staff abuse one of our clients.
  • Dispatch: Ok, and where did this occur at?
  • Caller: At the home.”

Officers said witnesses caught 19- year-old Joseph Garcia forcefully shoving multiple clients and mocking one non-verbal by making inaudible noises at him.

One co-worker even sent a text to another staff member saying a fly swatter was used to hit a man while he was in the shower.

Witnesses tell officers Joseph Garcia was forcefully shoving multiple clients, possibly even using a fly swatter to hit one man while he was in the shower.

They say that the home did the right thing by self-reporting.

However, the department worries there are many other cases throughout Stillwater that are going unreported.

“As a department, that's probably our number one concern, Capt. Gibbs said. “It leaves you wondering, how much of this occurs that never comes to our attention.”

Officers said in Garcia's case witnesses have video evidence showing the abuses.

Both staff have been terminated from the homes according to police.

If you know their whereabouts, you’re asked to call Stillwater PD.

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