On Jan. 8, 2021, 39-year-old Abeba Davis paid a visit to her social worker at Queens County Hospital Center in Jamaica in N.Y. to receive anxiety medication after suffering from a sexual assault attack the week before.
Once the woman reported the attack to the NYPD and filed charges, the department assigned her to the social worker.
In a lawsuit filed last month with Queens Supreme Court, Davis alleged that during her Jan. 8 visit, her social worker momentarily stepped away from their session and during that time staff members forced her into the facility’s psych ward. Davis added that as she pleaded with the staff to let her go, they made her remove her clothing and take pills.
“I’m begging, ‘Please, I’m not crazy.’ And they’re like, ‘Yeah, yeah,’ because the next person next to me is also saying they’re not crazy,” Davis recalled in a recent interview. “No one hears me, I was just like nothing to them. I was just a naked Black girl sitting in the corner begging to get out, saying, ‘I’m not crazy. I’m not crazy.’”
Davis said that when she visited the hospital, there was never any discussion of a mental health evaluation. “She didn’t say anything about me getting a psychiatric evaluation,” she said when discussing her social worker.
The woman added that before she was ushered into the psych ward, the social worker even promised to come right back.
The sexual assault victim stated that once staff had brought her to the psych ward, there was a guard blocking the door to the exit. She recalled having her belongings such as her phone and jewelry confiscated and said she was left half-naked with only a medical sheet covering the top half of her body.
Next, Davis said she was transferred to a room and “surrounded by mental patients.”
The woman says that she was frightened by the situation, but staff instructed her to take pills to calm herself. Davis says she does not know what type of medication she was given.
Davis says her social worker returned hours later. She added that the woman apologized and said that they messed up. Davis believes that the ordeal lasted for about 10 hours. She was released the same day.
Following her visit to the Queens County Hospital Center, a doctor reportedly wrote in their notes, “Patient has no mood or psychotic symptoms, denies suicidal/homicidal ideations.” The doctor also allegedly noted, “Patient has fair insight and judgment.”