Ex-Maricopa County attorney to lead internal investigation into Hacienda Healthcare

PHOENIX (FOX 10) - Former Maricopa County Attorney Rick Romley will lead an investigation into Hacienda Healthcare after a woman in a vegetative state gave birth unexpectedly last month.

Romley spoke at a news conference on Monday and it was the first time anyone connected with Hacienda Healthcare made a public statement.

He served as the Maricopa County attorney for 16 years and was hired by the board of directors for Hacienda Healthcare to lead an internal review.

In December, a woman in a vegetative state gave birth to a baby boy, and 911 calls revealed the staff did not know she was pregnant.

Phoenix police are investigating this as a sexual assault and have obtained DNA samples from male staff members.

Romley says his first priority will be patient safety.

"How visitors come in, what security guards they have there, are there cameras there, are doors locked, so anyone can't just be walking in," he said. "I'll be looking at the security issues first. I think that's the number one priority. I want to make sure this never happens again."

Romley says he has not spoken with the victim's family but is willing to sit down with them if they would like to meet with him.

Romley says there is no timeline for the completion of the investigation and it will go on as long as it takes to complete a thorough review.

"It may be very painful, but the facts will take us wherever it goes and there's probably going to be some very difficult moments and stuff like that, but they assured me they wanted to do that. They've assured me they want to fix the problems," said Romley.