A caregiver in Chandler who was responsible for watching elderly men was away getting cigarettes as two of his patients fell and could not get up.
On Tuesday, charges were filed against 22-year-old Cedric Nino Lopez, police said.
According to police reports, Lopez allegedly left the home last July to buy a pack of cigarettes and left three elderly men unattended in the home.
Lopez was seven miles away smoking cigarettes at a Circle K, when two of the men fell and couldn't get up, police said. A third man heard their cries and called 911.
Chandler Fire responded to the home near Cooper and Riggs roads and assisted the men. Lopez reportedly returned to the home an hour later after getting a call from the owner.
Lopez allegedly admitted that he bought cigarettes and smoked three of them while at the Circle K and was planning on going home to see his brother's girlfriend but instead returned to the home after getting a call from the owner, police said.
The owner told police that employees are not permitted to leave during their shifts.
Lopez has been charged with three counts of vulnerable adult abuse and is due in court on October 3.