Chandler couple arrested after elderly man dies from heat exposure

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Posted at 11:08 AM, Aug 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-15 22:14:50-04

CHANDLER, AZ — A Chandler couple who manage an assisted living facility has been arrested for abuse in connection with the death of a man in their care.

The Arizona Attorney General's Office says a grand jury has indicted Joseph and Lolita Somera for vulnerable adult abuse.

The couple manages the Happy Homes assisted-living facility in Chandler where 69-year-old Jon Rager died last August after two days without air conditioning, according to the AG's office.

Investigators say there were five residents in the home at the time.

Rager had lived at the home for four months. Investigators say the temperature in Rager's room was 100 degrees.

The Maricopa County Medical examiner determined that Rager died from renal disease complicated by pneumonia, contributed by heat exposure.

The couple is from the Philippines, and their status in the U.S. is "questionable" according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Their next court date is August 22.