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SOUTH : No Injunction in Adult Care Home Case

January 09, 1994|SANDRA HERNANDEZ

A judge has refused to issue a preliminary injunction against a woman accused of operating an adult care facility without a license, citing lack of evidence.

Superior Court Judge Diane Wayne turned down the state attorney general's request that would bar Gevenva Church from operating a licensed care facility. Wayne told Deputy Atty. Gen. Tammy Chung "you've given me no proof" that the residents of Ephesians Haven at 1925 Hobart St. require supervised care or that Church continues to operate the facility.

"What I have is a situation where elderly people clearly don't want to move," the judge added.

Thursday's hearing marked the first time that Church, who operated the Sharon Lynn Guest Home at 12040 S. Broadway, was in court to face allegations that she continues to run an adult care center without a license.

Dressed in a gray suit, Church sat quietly in the back of the courtroom with her husband while the judge denied the motion. Church's attorney, David J. Morris, refused to comment.

Church's license to operate an adult care facility was revoked in October by the state Department of Social Services after she was cited for repeated health and safety violations at the Sharon Lynn Guest Home.

"We hardly ever seek injunctions," said Arthur Carter of the Department of Social Services Licensing Care office. "People will usually comply, and this is the first time I've had to do one in the last five years."

The state attorney general's office has said that Church has been operating the Ephesians Haven since losing her license. The Department of Social Services contends that up to nine residents who lived at the Sharon Lynn Guest Home live at the Hobart Street facility and require supervised care.

Several times during the hearing, Chung urged Wayne to reconsider, saying the fact that residents of the Ephesians Haven had spent time living in a licensed care facility demonstrates that they require professional care.

However, Wayne disagreed, saying no medical testimony was presented to show that many of the mostly elderly residents were incompetent or unable to take their own medication.

"They (residents) clearly don't want to move," Wayne said. "What do I do? Move these 89-year-old people based on a social worker's one- or two-day report? I just can't move them."

Chung said she may seek medical testimony that would prove most of the residents require supervised care.

Church also faces action on outstanding fines that have accumulated since her license was revoked last year.

"We'll try to collect that money, but we still have to prove that she has been operating a home without a license," Chung said.

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