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Fitchburg caregiver charged with abusing Alzheimer’s patient

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FITCHBURG (WKOW) -- A caregiver from Fitchburg is charged with abusing an elderly patient who is in the final stages of Alzheimer's disease.

Nafije Zeka is charged with felony intentionally abusing patients.

The criminal complaint says Zeka was caught on video slapping, kicking, spitting on, and the pulling the hair of an 89-year-old patient at Sylvan Crossings Assisted Living at Chapel Valley in Fitchburg.

Sylvan Crossings is overseen by Touchstone Senior Services. Touchstone's CEO, Jaime Schwingel, sent the following statement to 27 News:

"We are saddened by the unacceptable events that occurred by this individual. Even though this individual worked for us for such a short time, we feel deep remorse for her actions. Before anyone is hired by our company, we have policies in place to ensure that no one with a bad background is hired, including this individual.  We can assure you that her background check and references were good upon hire. As soon as we were made aware of this individuals behavior, we took quick action by contacting and cooperating with both the state and the law enforcement entities."  

Court records show Zeka has an initial appearance in Dane County Court scheduled for March 5.

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