Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

News

March 14, 2013

Man accused of sex assault on disabled relative

A 58-year-old Dascomb Road resident has pleaded not guilty to charges he sexually assaulted an elderly relative who’s been incapacitated by a stroke.

John Bangert, 75 Dascomb Road, was arrested last Thursday and charged with assault and battery on a person 14 or older, incest and rape. Prior to his arraignment Friday, Bangert had professed his innocence in a voluntary police interview two days earlier.

The charges stem from an alleged incident that took place late Tuesday night, March 5, at the Wingate Nursing Home at 80 Andover St., less than a mile from the Bangert home.

An elderly relative of Bangert’s lives at the nursing home. She can’t speak, eat or move on her own after suffering a stroke, according to a police narrative filed by Andover Police Patrolman Timothy Hagerty.

A Wingate nurse who entered the room to check the woman’s catheter said that while she was in the room March 5 she saw John Bangert sexually assault the woman with his hand.

His sister, Barbara, was in the room with him and “made a comment to him about their [relative’s] feeding tube.” According to the nurse, she “seemed unaffected by John’s actions,” Hagerty’s narrative reads. The sister has not been charged.

After pleading not guilty to the charges Friday, John Bangert was held on $2,500 cash bail, which was later paid to release him.

John Bangert declined to comment when reached at his home Monday, saying he “can’t speak to” the allegations.

He has a “strict stay-away order” requiring him to stay away from the woman and Wingate Nursing home, according to court documents. He has a probable cause hearing scheduled for May 8.

Officials with Wingate Healthcare declined to comment, citing medical privacy laws. Wingate Healthcare, founded 22 years ago, operates 19 nursing home facilities in New York and Massachusetts.

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