Mr. Berry in a group home with a candlestick: It sounds like the solution to a game of Clue.
But this was no child's play. The Monday morning assault - a group-home resident attacked a worker and three residents with a wrought-iron candlestick - resulted in the employee and one resident being flown to a medical center, where they were in critical condition. A resident of the home has been charged with attempted aggravated murder.
The assault itself is cause for alarm. But viewed within the context of cost-cutting measures at developmental centers in Ohio, and it becomes apparent the state should review its policy of shifting developmentally disabled individuals to privately run care and related downsizing at centers.
Barely a week earlier, a developmental center worker suffered a broken ankle during a scuffle with a resident who had threatened others. Yet this month, Tiffin Developmental?Center is to lose its three remaining police officers. It's part of a pattern of downsizing staff while transferring residents to privately run homes.
The effort to trim costs is understandable, and a group home environment can be suitable - perhaps better - for some developmentally disabled individuals.
But, Monday's assault could have had even more tragic consequences. Could it have occurred outside the home? If so, what if school-age children or an infant in a stroller had been nearby?
A detective said police had been called to the home previously for fights, assaults and suicidal individuals. Are employees of group homes as well equipped to handle violent, or potentially violent, situations as are developmental center employees and officers?
Costs should not be cut without keeping safety of disabled clients, workers and the public paramount. About that, there should be no mystery.