Ex-husband: Hospital worker assault on wife damaged marriage

A retired corrections officer told jurors on Wednesday that he was preparing to take his daughters to school on May 16, 2008, when he received a call from his wife.

The woman had been taken to Centennial Hills Hospital Medical Center after suffering a seizure the previous day, but something had happened during her overnight stay.

“She said that one of the nurses touched her inappropriately,” the witness said. “That’s pretty much all she told me.”

Prosecutors presented the man’s testimony during the sexual assault trial of Steven Farmer, a certified nursing assistant who is accused of victimizing five female patients at Centennial Hills Hospital. Two of those women, including the witness’ ex-wife, reported that Farmer had sexually assaulted them.

The witness said he and his wife divorced last year after 18 years of marriage. He said the effects of the 2008 assault were among the factors that caused the divorce.

After arriving at the hospital the morning of the assault, the man testified, he found his wife in her room.

“She was obviously stressed, crying, upset,” he testified. “She was visibly upset.”

At his wife’s request, he called 911. He said he identified himself as a Metropolitan Police Department officer during the call because “it’s required.”

Detectives soon arrived to interview his wife, who was moved to the more-secure maternity ward.

Linda Ebbert, a sexual assault nurse, also arrived to conduct an exam.

Ebbert testified Wednesday and described the patient’s demeanor.

“She was weepy off and on throughout the examination,” the nurse said. “She was pretty devastated.”

Ebbert said the woman told her the assailant had assaulted her with his fingers and performed oral sex on her.

The nurse said she found recent, crescent-shaped lacerations in the woman’s vaginal area that were consistent with injuries caused by fingernails. Pictures of those lacerations were shown to the jury.

Nursing supervisor Lorraine Wescott also testified Wednesday. She recalled being advised on the morning of May 16, 2008, that a patient wanted to speak with her.

She then went to the patient’s room.

“I found a woman who was crying. She was clutching her phone. She was very upset,” Wescott testified.

The supervisor said she did not call police.

“I was trying to comfort the patient,” the soft-spoken witness said.

Wescott said she soon learned that the patient’s husband had called police.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal typically does not publish the names of sexual assault victims.

Contact reporter Carri Geer Thevenot at cgeer@reviewjournal.com or 702-384-8710. Follow @CarriGeer on Twitter.