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Former health-care chief denies abusing elderly

SHARE Former health-care chief denies abusing elderly

CEDAR CITY — The former administrator of a health-care facility charged with five counts of elder abuse and neglect pleaded not guilty in 5th District Court Thursday.

John David Needles, 32, is accused of taking narcotic patches off the backs of elderly patients at Kolob Regional Rehabilitation Center in Cedar City for his own use.

Attorney Doug Terry entered the plea for Needles, who did not appear in court.

Needles allegedly took the medication June 30 and July 1 from five elderly patients while they were sleeping. He was fired from his job on July 5 but was not arrested on the charges until Aug. 27, when police were informed of the incidents.