FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
(BENTON, AR) January 9, 2024– Multiple former patients of Timber Ridge Neuro Restorative who were subjected to sexual abuse and assault filed a lawsuit against the the facility this morning in Saline County. Luke Hudson, one of the plaintiffs, along with his legal representatives, spoke outside the courthouse after filing the suit.
Luke shared his story of abuse that highlights the disturbing and dehumanizing nature of the sexual abuse he and many others endured at Timber Ridge. When Luke arrived at the facility in 2002 at age eleven, he endured sexual abuse on his very first day at the facility. And when he immediately reported it to a supervisor, his cry for help was dismissed.
“Whenever I tried to report the abuse or seek help, I was ignored, dismissed, or punished. I was told that I was lying, exaggerating, or imagining things. I was threatened, intimidated, or isolated. I was physically tortured. Timber Ridge failed to protect me and others and enabled our abusers,” Luke Hudson said outside the courthouse.
Luke also spoke about how the months-long abuse has impacted his daily life. “The abuse I endured has had serious and lasting consequences on my health and well-being. At Timber Ridge, I suffered numerous physical injuries, such as bruises, cuts, burns, fractures, and infections.The psychological trauma has also been haunting. I endured many terrible things, such as being forced into bloody fights with other patients for the amusement of the staff members. Since then I have battled depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, and suicidal thoughts. I lost my trust, confidence, and self-esteem. I lost my ability to function, to heal, and to recover. It has been a terrible, life-changing battle.”
Luke Hudson has chosen not to remain anonymous in the lawsuit because he wants to speak up for himself and the other victims. According to the complaint filed today, multiple employees of Timber Ridge engaged in inappropriate and illegal sexual conduct with patients throughout the 1990’s, 2000’s, 2010’s and 2020’s.
Several other plaintiffs are included in the lawsuit, which alleges that as minors they were sexually abused and assaulted by Timber Ridge agents, employees and other patients. The victims allege that Timber Ridge knew of the sexual misconduct and failed to take appropriate actions to stop the abuse and protect them along with the facility’s other vulnerable patients.
Other victims included in the suit are H.B., who was admitted to Timber Ridge in 2018 at age seven and again in 2020 at age nine for medical diagnoses related to autism, B.A. who was admitted in 2023 at the age of fifteen, Tiffany Fortner who was admitted in 1996 at age eight, Andrea Oliver who was admitted in 2001 at age ten, Colton Miller who was admitted in 1998 at age eight as a result of being placed in the Foster Care system, Tracy Carter who was admitted in 2005 at age nine, and Christopher Harwell who was admitted at three different times beginning at five in 1999.
Timber Ridge is a for-profit corporation and received compensation to treat each of these victims. The lawsuit claims that as a direct result of the negligence of Timber Ridge and its employees, the victims are entitled to damages for past and future life care, lost wages and lost earning capacity, emotional distress, pain, suffering, and mental anguish, along with loss of normal life.
The survivors are represented by OnderLaw LLC, co-counsel Stinar Law, PLLC, and co-counsel Paul Bryd Law Firm, PLLC. The firms have filed suit on behalf of multiple male and female survivors of sexual assault and abuse. All abuse victims were minors at the time of the abuse, and their claims fall under an Arkansas law known as the Justice for Vulnerable Victims of Sexual Abuse Act.
“No child should ever endure abuse and no lawsuit can undo the devastating harm it causes. However, survivors of sexual abuse deserve justice and their day in court to hold their abusers and enabling institution accountable. These brave survivors have come forward believing that abuse must be made public to bring awareness and protect others from becoming future victims. When institutions place profits over people and subject young, vulnerable individuals to horrific conduct there must be accountability. We applaud these brave survivors who have come forward to demand justice and empower other victims to come forward, too,” attorney Parker Stinar said. ###