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Long Beach Assemblyman Alleges Abuse of His Son

A state assemblyman is accusing a Brookville-based agency serving the special needs community with abusing his son at its residence in Plainview.

Harvey Weisenberg, D-Long Beach, and his wife, Ellen, filed a federal lawsuit Monday against AHRC Nassau, an agency which serves developmentally disabled people in residential settings around Long Island.

In the lawsuit, the Weisenbergs allege that their son was physically and psychologically abused at the agency's Plainview living facility. Weisenberg told Newsday:
"The thought of someone hurting him is almost unspeakably painful to us," of his son Ricky, 54. "We will continue to speak out on his behalf."
AHRC Nassau issued a statement Monday about the Weisenbergs' lawsuit: "We are disappointed that our longtime friend would choose to name us in a lawsuit of this nature," the statement said.

The elder Weisenberg is among the legislature's leading advocates for the disabled. Weisenberg grew up in Long Beach and was a teacher and police officer before entering public office. He and his wife have five children.

The lawsuit, filed in federal district court in Brooklyn, also makes allegations against Dwayne Edwards of West Hempstead. Edwards, an employee at the Plainview site at the time, verbally abused and hit Ricky Weisenberg in the presence of others, the suit contends.

The incident took place three years ago, on April 9, 2009, the suit claims. The suit asks for unspecified damages.

Ricky Weisenberg, 54, suffers from cerebral palsy and can't speak. He still lives at the Plainview facility, the elder Weisenberg said. AHRC Nassau assists the developmentally disabled with housing and other services.

Weisenberg told Newsday that he learned of the abuse charge from AHRC Nassau officials in 2009. The agency was complying with legislation authored by Weisenberg in 2007, requiring that guardians be notified when allegations of abuse surface. Newsday said Weisenberg filed the lawsuit three years afterward because "we thought the authorities we went to would do something, but they didn't."

According to AHRC Nassau's statement "the employee was immediately relieved of his duties. An investigation was opened by an independent, internal unit of AHRC Nassau and all parties were notified that day."

The investigation took one day and resulted in the firing of the employee, the statement said.

With reporting by Joe Dowd

paul.d.spellman October 04, 2012 at 03:52 PM
Taurus, I was not being sarcastic, I actually did type slow to help you understand what I was writing. Once again what did "aka pau.d.spellman:" mean? Something you made up?
Taurus October 04, 2012 at 04:00 PM
You typed slow so that I'd understand better? Oh boy. I meant nothing by the aka-just thinking that perhaps that isn't your name and please let me state very clearly; I don't care what your name is. You are sounding very paranoid. Now, if you don't understand ME and I'm not typing slow which is laughable-I am done here. If I continue to get comments regarding aka I will unsubscribe to this Patch-filling up my inbox.
Taurus October 04, 2012 at 04:02 PM
I think you don't know what aka means 'also known as'. Now, put it to rest. Let it go. Have a nice life.
paul.d.spellman October 04, 2012 at 04:14 PM
Taurus, You said "Too busy for a p - contest. I'm done." and posted again then posted " I am done here" and posted yet again and once again posted "-I am done here" and had another post.
jack sherry December 22, 2012 at 07:55 PM
Ahrc has a poor record of vettng It employees. In new York a manage by the name of curls walker has been sexually abusing downs individuals and embezzlement of ssi checks for 7 solid years. And he got 2 promotions. Go figure.

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