Police Dispatch

Nobody Puts Baby in a Corner

Foothills Beat

Jan. 6, 6:55 p.m.

An adult-care center worker became a perfect foil for the folks under her care, repeatedly throwing childish "temper tantrums" in front of respected senior clients (and still escaped the law), according to a Pima County Sheriff's Department report.

A sheriff's deputy responded to the facility to meet with its manager, who told him an employee had recently reported bad behavior from another female attendant who—for the second time that week alone—had gotten "out of control ... accusing her of all kinds of things" without cause. The manager said this crabby coworker was already known for causing mischief at the home and just a few days ago had "kind of blown up on somebody" else; now she'd instigated a silly-turned-serious skirmish with another peer, followed by a "major meltdown."

The victimized employee said the recent brawl began when she'd requested the subject prepare medication for some of their oldest residents; the other attendant sulkishly took the task but whined "she wished she would have known sooner" and her associate "should have known better" and mentioned the duty earlier that afternoon. Back-talk turned to bickering as the subject walked around the counter where they were working to shout right in the victim's ear, "getting up in her face and yelling to her: I'm going to do this and I'm going to do that."

Since this whole scene was happening in plain sight of elderly wards and other important clients, like visiting family members, complainant reportedly reacted as professionally as possible, coolly commanding her to calm down and not raise her voice—which only elicited more yelling as the sullen subject proceeded to "call her a little girl and said she would do whatever she wanted."

Then she started poking her peer with her finger, hard, over and over, saying "something to the effect of how she had a couple of domestic charges on her already and was not afraid to hit her." Recalling a rumor that this mischief-maker had threatened to punch a different caregiver on another occasion, the reportee feared a real ruckus.

And indeed, the scene became a full-blown squalling fit in front of patrons—including, apparently, howls of profanity—so the injured party backed away and called the manager, who helped her lock the petulant perpetrator out of the workplace. But she continued her conniption outside, banging on the door and wailing that she didn't have her keys. Unfortunately, as the victim and manager discovered upon relenting, she'd had her keys the whole time—this was just a naughty scheme to gain re-entry and yell more dirty words in their faces. She finally fled after being fired in no uncertain terms.

All this merited an assault charge, the deputy informed her disciplinarians, but he had more serious work preventing him from interviewing the subject at home (and had received no answer upon phoning). The complainants agreed to call him if the sub-adult senior-sitter returned.

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