A Perthshire care home worker has been removed from his post following a hearing which found he sexually assaulted a female colleague.
Members of the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) ruled Laurence Baltazar’s fitness to practice in his job at Beech Manor Care Home, Blairgowrie, was impaired .
He had unzipped his trousers and brushed against the woman, attempted to kiss her and put his hands on her shoulder, pulled her trousers and underwear down, grabbed her and put his tongue inside her mouth, put his hand inside her tunic and touched her breast.
The allegations against Baltazar, 44, who no longer works at the care home, were all said to be sexually motivated and took place between December 2015 and February 2016. The SSSC fitness to practise panel found all the allegations to be proved at a hearing recently held in Dundee.
Baltazar worked as a care assistant at the Blairgowrie care home, between 2015 and 2016 in the downstairs wing of the building. The home is run by Renaissance Care Ltd.
A report issued by the SSSC provides details of all the proven allegations made against Baltazar. It states the first incident occurred in December 2015 when Baltazar and the woman concerned were working together in a resident’s room when he tried to kiss her.
The report says: “She asked, ‘What are you doing?’ and you (Baltazar) responded by saying ‘I’m so sorry – please keep our secret. I feel so guilty.
“The woman didn’t report the matter.”
The panel also heard of another incident that took place on February 3, 2016, when Baltazar massaged the female employee’s shoulders while the pair were in a resident’s room.
The SSSC was told Baltazar and the woman were in the process of changing a resident’s bed sheets and clothes when he turned her around and pulled her trousers and underwear down.
The report states: “The woman was so shocked by your actions that she did not scream out. She froze and didn’t react. Someone was coming down the corridor and you stopped, pulled up your trousers and said, ‘We’ll finish this later.’
“The woman turned around and you grabbed her face and tried to force your tongue in her mouth. You then put your hand in her tunic and touched her breast.
“The woman didn’t alert the person who was coming along the corridor and did not feel able to speak to anyone about what had happened.”
The panel heard the woman reported the latter incident on February 15, 2016 and that Baltazar was made aware of the allegations against him via a letter sent to him three days later.
The SSSC panel was told Baltazar left the country at “short notice” to visit his family following an investigatory meeting at which the allegations were put to him.
The panel heard he had not informed the care home or sought their consent for the trip.
Their report states Baltazar claimed the woman tried to kiss him and gave him the impression she wanted to do so. He told his employers he rejected the woman’s advances and that she had fabricated her account.
However, the panel didn’t accept his account and concluded that fitness to practise as a care assistant was impaired on the grounds of misconduct.
“The panel considers that a removal order is the most appropriate sanction,” the report says.
A spokesperson for Renaissance Care said: “This person is no longer a member of our staff.”
Baltazar was not available for comment.