Monday, May 11 2009 8:01 AM EDT2009-05-11 13:01:28 GMT
The City of Memphis came under fire after a 14-year-old rape victim could not get processed for more than a day, delaying the collection of evidence needed for prosecution. The delay resulted from a staffing shortage because nurses who chose not to move to Memphis were fired after the city council created new residency requirements.More >>
Thursday, May 7 2009 1:42 PM EDT2009-05-07 18:42:57 GMT
Rape victims were recently turned away from the city's understaffed rape crisis center. But the City of Memphis says six new nurses have been hired, and a new director is set to begin work this month. More >>
Thursday, April 30 2009 8:10 AM EDT2009-04-30 13:10:38 GMT
Several nurses were terminated from Memphis' rape crisis center when the city enforced its residency requirement. The staffing shortage has delayed the examinations of rape victims and put prosecutions in jeopardy. More >>
Sunday, May 26 2013 12:05 AM EDT2013-05-26 04:05:39 GMT
(WMC-TV) - The Memphis Grizzlies lost to the San Antonio Spurs Saturday in game 3 104 - 93. The Grizzlies play at home again Monday at FedExForum. Spurs lead the Western Conference Finals 3-0. CopyrightMore >>
The San Antonio Spurs used overtime for the second straight game to edge the Grizzlies 104-93, to take a commanding 3-0 lead in the Western Conference Finals.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 11:49 PM EDT2013-05-26 03:49:21 GMT
(WMC-TV) - People nationwide gathered in downtown Memphis Saturday for a basketball game, music, and to enjoy to spirit of Beale Street. A street party outside FedExForum to celebrate game three of theMore >>
People nationwide gathered in downtown Memphis Saturday for a basketball game, music, and to enjoy to spirit of Beale Street. More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 11:07 PM EDT2013-05-26 03:07:08 GMT
WALNUT RIDGE, AR (KAIT) - The Walnut Ridge community celebrated the life of 14-year-old Sidney Randall who went missing on March 9 and was found on May 18 in the Black River. Family and friends filledMore >>
The Walnut Ridge community celebrated the life of 14-year-old Sidney Randall who went missing on March 9 and was found on May 18 in the Black River.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 10:56 PM EDT2013-05-26 02:56:13 GMT
(WMC-TV) - Four people were shot and one died at a nightclub in Clarksdale, Mississippi Saturday morning. The shooting happened in the 300 Block of West Tallahatchie Street at 12:03 a.m. John Wilson, 35,More >>
Four people were shot and one died at a nightclub in Clarksdale, Mississippi Saturday morning.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 10:31 PM EDT2013-05-26 02:31:59 GMT
(WMC-TV) - Many around the Mid-South flock to Cooper-Young for its unique restaurants and atmosphere, but the shortage in parking spaces sends many patrons home with parking tickets. City leaders believeMore >>
Many around the Mid-South flock to Cooper-Young for its unique restaurants and atmosphere, but the shortage in parking spaces sends many patrons home with parking tickets.More >>
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Over the past year, the Memphis Sexual Assault Resource Center has deteriorated into an understaffed and overwhelmed facility. Insiders call it a public safety concern - mismanagement that reaches the top offices in Memphis city government.
The rape crisis center was once a model for rape crisis treatment. Specialized nurses and counselors treated victims from three states around the clock. Their work collecting DNA evidence is crucial to convicting rapists and protecting victims.
So imagine the horror when a 14-year-old rape victim was told she'd have to wait almost two weeks to collect DNA.
"We were told they'd be open at eight in the morning to come back at eight that morning," said Lt. Scott Evans of the Horn Lake Police Department. "They called at eight that morning. They were advised the closest appointment would be May 8th."
Police say the rape happened April 28th. Why the wait? An Action News Five investigation revealed severe under-staffing at the center, specialized nurses run off by mismanagement, and city-ordered residency rules that required nurses to live within Memphis city-limits.
Plus, the center has operated for more than a year now without an on-site manager.
"To go without a full-time quality director for over a year - it's untenable," said Deborah Clubb of the Memphis Women's Center.
Who's responsible? For starters, Ken Moody, Memphis' Director of Public Services and Neighborhoods. He oversees the Memphis Sexual Assault Resource Center, and for months, Shelby County District Attorney Bill Gibbons has been trying to get Moody to address serious problems.
"I have not heard from them," Gibbons said in a recent interview. "As a result, we would not be in a position to prosecute a case."
The nursing schedule at the center is shocking. During the month of April, the center was unstaffed almost 50 percent of the time, and that's with the Coordinator of Nursing Services working 24-hour shifts.
This was Judy Pinson's schedule: On April 2nd, she worked 24 hours straight, from midnight Thursday to midnight Friday. She worked 16 hours the day before, and triple shifts every Thursday three weeks in a row.
Pinson resigned after giving city leaders one month's notice, but sources say Moody and his staff did nothing to fill the position.
Moody's personnel includes his second in command, Yalonda McFadgon, the Deputy Director of Public Services and Neighborhoods.
Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton appointed McFadgon to the job after she served as the Mayor's bodyguard. She was in prison before that, convicted of stealing drug money while she worked for the Memphis Police Department.
Former and current nurses at the center say McFadgon is not qualified to run a rape crisis center, and that she is responsible for the center's mismanagement.
Action News 5 asked Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton if McFadgon and others were qualified for their positions in a special report 10 months ago. Mayor Herenton didn't want to answer questions then, or now.
"Whether the buck has been passed around or whether it was just not seen as some of the other many issues the city is dealing with I don't know," Clubb said.
Memphis City Council member Jim Strickland believes the center needs a complete overhaul from the top down.
"The council has not had adequate explanation of why we're in this emergency situation, but I think we're all determined to get to the bottom of it," Strickland said. "It really makes more sense to make this agency a county agency as opposed to a city agency, because it handles victims throughout the region."
Mayor Herenton doesn't want to hear that either.
For now, the solution is temporarily bringing back some of the nurses who were fired, and a new director has been hired. She's Dr. Betty Winter from the Memphis Police Department, and will be working under Yalonda McFadgon and Ken Moody.
Action News 5 asked Moody what he could do to ensure the public that is concerned about the center.
"Just let them know that we're concerned about it, we're aware of it, and we're dealing with it," he said. "We're going to address it. Thank you."
Sources say until McFadgon and Moody's positions are addressed, problems at the center will persist.
"To have had a model, really a national model facility, that has been allowed in this recent time to deteriorate to the degree that even children who are coming for service are not tended to, it's abominable," Clubb said.
Action News 5 requested interviews with Yalonda McFadgon, as well as a sit-down interview with Ken Moody. Those requests are made through Mayor Herenton's office, and so far, no one's talking.
We did speak to multiple sources for this story - both current and former employees of the center - who asked that we not reveal their identities. Members of the Memphis City Council and Shelby County Commission will meet Tuesday to discuss the center's future.
We've heard from many of you concerning this matter, and want you to know you can take action. If you want the issues resolved at the rape crisis center, call or email the Memphis Mayor's office or your city council representative and let your voice be heard!
Willie W. Herenton City Hall - 125 N. Main St. Room 700 Memphis, Tn 38103 Phone: (901) 576-6007 Email: mayor @memphistn.gov Mayor's Citywide Call Center during normal business hours (8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday except on holidays): Phone: (901) 576-6500
Friday, May 24 2013 10:57 PM EDT2013-05-25 02:57:13 GMT
(WMC-TV) - The Tipton County Sheriff's Office found 32-year-old Michael Olin Holland, Jr.'s motorcycle Friday afternoon. No reports indicate that Holland was found. Holland was last seen Wednesday morning. AccordingMore >>
Investigators recovered 32-year-old Michael Olin Holland, Jr.'s body near the Covington airport Friday night.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 8:43 PM EDT2013-05-25 00:43:43 GMT
(WMC-TV) - A woman is dead and her husband is being questioned by police. The woman was reportedly shot in a domestic altercation on the 600 block of Hamilton Street in Orange Mound. Action News 5's JustinMore >>
A woman is dead and her husband is being questioned by police.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 5:35 PM EDT2013-05-25 21:35:53 GMT
The Shelby County Health Department has issued a Code Orange Ozone Alert for Saturday, May 25, 2013. On this day, MATA will offer 25 cent fares on bus, MATAplus and trolley rides. Seniors 65 yearsMore >>
Saturday, May 25, 2013, MATA will offer 25 cent fares on bus, MATAplus and trolley rides.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 10:58 PM EDT2013-05-25 02:58:47 GMT
(WMC-TV) - Club 152 on Beale Street has been given the OK to reopen. A judge gave the club owners permission to open the doors Friday afternoon. Since the closure, the owners have conducted backgroundMore >>
A judge gave the club owners permission to open the doors Friday afternoon.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 11:32 PM EDT2013-05-25 03:32:50 GMT
(WMC-TV) - If you were not able to get a ticket to the Grizzlies matchup against the Spurs Saturday, you have one last chance to get your hands on one. The Memphis Grizzlies announced it will release aMore >>
If you were not able to get a ticket to the Grizzlies matchup against the Spurs Saturday, you have one last chance to get your hands on one.More >>
Friday, February 15 2013 11:51 PM EST2013-02-16 04:51:21 GMT
(WMC-TV) - Scientists at Ole Miss are generating a lot of buzz thanks to the creation of a new pain killer -- made with marijuana. Ole Miss is home to the nation's only legally grown marijuana operation.More >>
Scientists at Ole Miss are generating a lot of buzz thanks to the creation of a new pain killer -- made with marijuana.More >>
Click here to see how much you would take home depending on which state you bought your winning lottery ticket in. BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Millions of people try their luck on big lottery games likeMore >>
Millions of people try their luck on big lottery games like Powerball every week. We wonder what the odds actually are that you'll choose the winning combinations. WAFB's Keitha Nelson talks with an expert on numbers.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 6:45 PM EDT2013-05-23 22:45:01 GMT
(WMC-TV) - A baby fights to survive at Le Bonheur Children's Hospital in critical condition after being hit by an SUV with his mother behind the wheel, according to police. An orange circle marks the pointMore >>
A baby fights to survive at Le Bonheur Children's Hospital in critical condition after being hit by an SUV with his mother behind the wheel, according to police.More >>