Nurse arrested after Madison County investigators say nanny cam shows mistreatment
Maretta Hostetler pleaded guilty to two counts of battery and one count of battery with bodily injury to a disabled victim on Feb. 26, 2018. She was sentenced to 9 years in jail.
ANDERSON, Ind. — A nurse trusted with taking care of an Anderson family’s disabled children is facing battery charges after her actions were caught on a nanny camera.
Rachael Ginder said when she and her husband started noticing bruises on their disabled, non-verbal teenage daughter, they reported it. She and the company employing their overnight nurse set up the camera in the girl’s bedroom. Ginder said she never would have imagined what they would find on the recordings.
“I figured it would just show the minor things like I was thinking,” Ginder said.
Investigators said what the videos showed was troubling to watch.
“You see the little girl being grabbed by the hair and thrown down,” Madison County Prosecutor Rodney Cummings said.
Court documents say Maretta Hostetler is seen smoking what appears to be an electronic cigarette while caring for a feeding tube, flipping the girl in the nose, slapping her in the face and dropping her on the bed with enough force to shake it.
“Those children were children that really didn’t need disciplined so I mean it’s just hard to even fathom, you know,” Ginder said.
Court documents show Hostetler told investigators she never hit the girl. She was trying to keep the girl’s head straight because her oxygen stats would fall.
“The suspect just could not provide any information that would mitigate what our detectives were looking at,” Madison County Sheriff Scott Mellinger said.
The information investigators uncovered was thanks to a parent’s watchful eye.
“The parents of this case did exactly the right thing,” Cummings said.
“You just got to be aware of things and don’t just pass them off as nothing,” Ginder said.
Maretta Hostetler is facing three counts of battery, a level 5 felony.
A lawyer representing the home care company said it terminated the employee.
Investigators said the company acted appropriately, reporting the concerns to law enforcement immediately.