An 89 year-old nursing home patient with Alzheimer’s is under investigation after her frozen body was found in the courtyard of the facility early last Thursday morning. Sara Wentworth lived at The Arbor of Itasca for two years and had been outside for at least 90 minutes before a nursing care worker found her and brought her back inside, according to DuPage County Coroner Peter Siekmann.
Itasca Police Chief Scott Heher said that his department is close to concluding its investigation and noted that criminal charges were possible. He will be meeting later this afternoon with officials of the DuPage County state’s attorney’s office.
Nursing home personnel told police that they checked on Wentworth in her bed at 3 a.m., he said. Police were called to the rest home, 535 S. Elm Street, shortly after 5:40 a.m., with information that the women was not breathing.
Police Chief Heher said that a door leading to the courtyard had an alarm that had gone off, but when the staff checked on the signal, they did not see anyone.
A spokeswoman for the Illinois Department of Public Health will also be investigating this incident. Under a current federal rating system, the facility is rated as a "one star" facility, out of a possible five stars. It is one of 81 different nursing homes in the Chicago area.