Worker finds retirement home volunteer partially undressed in 85-year-old’s room

Posted at 1:21 PM, Mar 11, 2015
and last updated 2015-03-11 23:24:43-04

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- A 53-year-old man who volunteered at a Chesterfield retirement facility has been arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting a resident.

The incident happened Sunday, March 8 around 7:40 p.m. at the Virginia Retirement Community located in the 300 Twinridge Lane, according to Chesterfield police. That's where officers were called to investigate "a sexual assault involving an adult female victim and a known male suspect."

Police said that the 85-year-old victim is a resident at the facility.

Thomas M. Garrett, of the 7700 block of Midlothian Turnpike, was arrested and charged with attempted rape through the use of the victim’s mental incapacity.

Police were called after a worker allegedly walked in on Garrett in the elderly woman's room.


The victim was taken to the hospital and has since been released.

CBS 6 News questioned a facility spokesperson about the notification process since some residents and family members we questioned had not heard about what happened.

Facility spokesperson Brian Fawkes said administrators did not send written letters to everyone, but did announce what happened during a community meal Monday.


Pete Spence, whose stepmother lives at the complex, said he is comfortable with how managers handled the incident.

“It’s a sign of the times anymore," Spence said. "You’ve got people that need help who are in places where they shouldn’t be.”

A spokesperson for the facility had no idea how long Garret had been volunteering at the facility.

Police said detectives are still investigating the incident.