Social worker accused of keeping mental patient as sex slave
An Illinois social worker seduced and kept a 24-year-old patient as a sex slave at a mental institution, according to a federal lawsuit.
Ben Hurt, 24, took legal action Thursday against one of his former social workers, 53-year-old Christy Lenhardt, who he said sexually abused him for three years at Elgin Mental Health Center, news station WBBM reported.
“She engaged in all kinds of various sexual misconduct,” Hurt’s attorney, Joe Cecala, told the station. “The graphic details are every sex act that you can imagine.”
His lawyer claimed that the social worker spent months seducing Hurt, starting in 2014, before they had sex at the state mental institution.
“She’s accused of manipulating and seducing our client, repeatedly, and it took her about four months until she actually had sex for the first time with him,” Cecala said. “We have evidence of her perversion, both in her emails to the client, nude photos.”
Hurt, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia, pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity in 2014 for battery against a police officer. The incident landed him at the facility, where his mom claims that Lendhart would make excuses to extend his stay, WBBM reported.
“They assured me that they were going to help me with my child,” Hurt’s mom D’Anntanette Lee told WBBM. “What they did to my son was wrong.”
Hurt, who was released from facility, also sued two other psychiatrists and the center’s director for allegedly ignoring the abuse.
Lenhardt was fired from the center in July but has not been charged with a crime.
Illinois State Police launched an investigation into the allegations, WGN-TV reported.