DIDSBURY - Police are asking for public help in identifying other potential victims after a man was charged last week with allegedly physically assaulting an 87-year-old resident of a local care facility, said Didsbury RCMP Staff Sgt. Steven Browne.
Maximino Garcia, 49, a Didsbury resident, was a care worker at the facility since 2014. The alleged offence took place between September 2021 and August 2022.
Garcia was charged after police received information on Nov. 7, he said.
“We are looking for additional witnesses and/or victims,” said Browne. “The potential exists for more victims because the individual was an employee there since 2014 so the potential exists for additional victims to be identified.
“If anybody has ever witnessed Mr. Garcia committing any criminal offences, specifically towards the residents in the care facility, we want to know about it.”
Some potential victims may no longer be at the facility, he said.
“We are dealing with a couple of different types of residents who are in there. Some are long-term, some are self-sufficient, and some are 100 per cent care like dementia patients,” he said.
There are several care facilities in Didsbury. Police have not said which facility is involved.
“We are not naming the facility because the facility is not culpable,” he said.
Bethany Care Society operates the 100-suite Bethany Didsbury. A spokesperson for Bethany Care Society declined to comment Monday.
Calls seeking comment and more information from Mountain View Seniors' Housing, which operates Aspen Ridge Lodge in the town, were not immediately returned.
On Tuesday, Nov. 7, the Didsbury RCMP received a report regarding the alleged physical abuse of a senior at a local residential care facility in Didsbury.
“Upon further investigation, it was determined the 87-year-old victim had been physically assaulted by a care worker at the facility between September 2021 to August 2022,” police said.
Police arrested and charged Garcia on Nov. 8.
“Garcia was released from police custody by a justice of the peace on several conditions to ensure the safety of the victim,” police said.
He has a Nov. 20 appearance in Alberta Court of Justice in Didsbury.
Anyone with information regarding the alleged assault or having any other information regarding possible additions victims is being asked to call Didsbury RCMP at 403-335-3382 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.