State suspends license of Grand Rapids adult group home

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – The state is revoking the license of a Grand Rapids adult foster care group home after the owner was arrested last week for embezzling from a resident in her care.

Kristen Martell, owner of the group home at 1405 Forrester Drive SE, is facing a felony charge for embezzlement from a vulnerable adult.

The state agency suspend Martell’s license on Oct. 6, requiring her to inform the guardians of adults in her care she could no longer provide adult foster care services.

She can appeal the suspension of her license.

Martell didn’t return a phone message left for her, and no one answered the door at the group home on Thursday afternoon. 

For the past 8 years, Martell had been licensed for an adult foster care small group home for up to six adults. It’s unclear how many residents were living in the home when her license was suspended last week. 

The suspension and arrest follow an investigation by the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, Bureau of Community and Health Systems.

During the investigation, Martell admitted to taking $1,441 more than she should have from the resident’s account between February and June.

She was given access to a debit card to withdraw $848.59 for rent and care, and $44 for internet service from the resident’s bank account each month.

Martell told an investigator she took the money because she owed about $22,000 in property taxes, according to the state.

DTE Energy also alerted the state the company was preparing to shut off the group home’s gas because Martell owes more than $1,500 in unpaid bills.

The investigation was triggered when another resident was taken to the emergency room twice in one week for agitation. A blood test showed the patient hadn’t received medication to treat the condition.

Records indicated when the resident ran out of medication on Sept. 2, the prescription wasn’t refilled for 17 days.

The investigator found Martell failed to do a background check on a man, who helped her…

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