State of Mississippi v. Hattie Hawkins a/k/a Hattie M. HawkinsAnnotate this Case
Hattie Hawkins was a nursing assistant at Heritage House Nursing Center. Deserie Edwards, a resident at Heritage House, suffered injuries while under Hawkins’s care. An investigation revealed that Hawkins had lifted Edwards by herself, knowing that two people were required to lift Edwards. Hawkins then improperly placed Edwards into a lift/sling and left her unattended. Edwards fell from the sling and suffered injuries, but Hawkins did not call for assistance. Hawkins was indicted for simple assault of a vulnerable person. Several days before trial, defense counsel demurred to the indictment
on the grounds that it did not comport with Mississippi Code Section 97-3-7(1) and was an improper statement of the law. The circuit court dismissed the case saying the indictment failed to state a cause of action against the defendant. The State filed a motion to reconsider, which was denied. The State appealed. Upon review, the Supreme Court held the indictment was sufficient and that the trial judge erred by granting the demurrer.