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Nursing assistant faces new allegation of sexual assault

Woman claims she was helpless as Steven Farmer assaulted her

Updated Friday, July 24, 2009 | 10:17 a.m.

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Steven Farmer

A second woman is suing nursing assistant Steven Farmer and Centennial Hills Hospital in northwest Las Vegas, claiming Farmer sexually assaulted her while she was lying helplessly in her hospital bed.

Farmer is awaiting trial on sexual assault charges involving six women he allegedly encountered while working at Centennial Hills or previously at Rawson-Neal Psychiatric Hospital.

In a lawsuit filed Thursday in Clark County District Court, "Jane Doe" says she was hospitalized at Centennial Hills in May 2008 when Farmer assaulted her.

The woman was recovering from severe seizures at the time, the lawsuit says.

"Jane Doe could not scream out because of the damages from the seizures," the lawsuit says. "However, she was conscious, terrorized, in fear and in severe pain and shock."

Sued in the suit were Farmer, Centennial Hills, its parent Valley Health System and Valley's parent, Pennsylvania-based Universal Health Services Inc. Also sued was American Nursing Services Inc., which provides contract medical personnel to hospitals.

Asked about the new lawsuit, Centennial Hills responded Friday with a statement by an attorney representing it in the Farmer cases.

"Centennial Hills Hospital has not yet been served with a lawsuit filed by Jane Doe and as a result cannot comment on the specific allegations contained therein. However, the safety of our patients is our top concern and priority. Centennial Hills has all appropriate mechanisms in place to ensure that the personnel providing patient care meet all legal requirements and assures the community that the patients, guests and employees of Centennial Hills Hospital are safe," said the statement from attorney David Ferrainolo.

In a pending lawsuit filed in the same court by another patient, the defendants have denied wrongdoing.

That patient, who sued in September, claims Farmer sexually assaulted her twice in May 2008 -- once in an elevator while taking her from the emergency room to a hospital room; and then again in the hospital room.

In the September lawsuit, the woman said she had been treated at the hospital for seizures associated with her epilepsy and that she was drowsy because of medication administered to her prior to the assault.

She claims that while assaulting her in the hospital room for 30 to 40 minutes, Farmer made vulgar remarks and told her that what he was doing would help her relax and fall asleep.

Centennial Hills has responded in court to that suit and says it was aware of no wrongdoing by Farmer prior to his arrest.

Farmer also denied the allegations in the first civil suit.

A response filed by his attorney said: "Defendant alleges that plaintiff consented to the conduct of defendant with the actual or apparent willingness for the conduct to occur."

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