RIO RANCHO, N.M. — An assisted-living home in Rio Rancho is facing a wrongful death and negligence lawsuit over the death of a 79-year-old man with dementia who suffered a fatal brain hemorrhage after being badly beaten by his roommate, a retired police officer who was himself suffering from dementia.
The family of Gilbert Perea, who would have turned 80 in May, filed the lawsuit earlier this month in state District Court in Bernalillo County and detailed the allegations within it Friday at a news conference. At the conference, Perea’s wife, son and two daughters spoke about the impact Perea’s death has had on them and urged other families to be careful when choosing assisted-living facilities for their loved ones.
“You put your faith in these people. You’re trusting them to look in on (your relatives),” said Cecilia Gonzalez, Perea’s daughter who spoke at the conference via video. “…You put your trust in these people. I just can’t believe this is happening to our family.”