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UPDATE: Fargo caregiver accused of deadly assault on patient going to trial

Rachel Cooper mugshot
Rachel Cooper mugshot(Cass County Jail)
Published: Sep. 22, 2021 at 9:26 AM CDT
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - UPDATE: The Fargo memory caregiver accused of a deadly assault on one of her patients earlier this summer is now taking her case to trial.

59-year-old Rachel Cooper is charged with manslaughter endangering an eligible adult in the death of 78-year-old Gary Pearson.

Fargo Police were called shortly after 6 p.m. on Aug. 3 to Maple View Memory Care at 4552 36th Ave. S., for an assault.

Cooper told investigators that she was cleaning Pearson’s bathroom when she and Pearson started struggling over the bathroom door. Surveillance video shows Cooper push Pearson and court documents say Pearson then fell backwards into the hallway.

Cooper later told police that Pearson was keeping her from getting out of the room that night and she struggled with him. Documents say she told investigators she pushed Pearson with one hand and he tripped and fell. Police say surveillance video shows Cooper pushing Pearson with both hands, which helped lead medical examiners to determine Pearson’s death as a homicide.

Pearson suffered a broken hip from the fall, and documents say because of that, he never returned to ‘base line,’ which caused his health to continue to deteriorate until he died on Aug. 19.

Cooper is currently out of jail on a $500 bond. Trial is slated to begin on Feb. 8.

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