A former Lincoln Regional Center security supervisor faces a felony sex abuse charge after a state investigator alleges she had a sexual relationship with a man committed for treatment at the state psychiatric hospital, according to court records.
Chalice Closen, who was arrested Monday, faces one count of first-degree sexual abuse of a protected person, a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
The 36-year-old Lincoln woman came under investigation by the Nebraska State Patrol in April, when another patient told investigators he saw Closen kissing a male patient in her office.
The male patient was interviewed by State Patrol Investigator Pedram Nabegh and said he had started flirting with Closen a few weeks after he was committed there in February 2018, according to an affidavit for her arrest.
The flirting gave way to kissing and touching, sometimes nightly, the patient told Nabegh.
They performed sex acts on each other on up to eight occasions, he told the investigator, and most of the sexual contact occurred in her office, the affidavit said.
Lancaster County prosecutors charged Closen on July 2.
She made her first appearance in court Tuesday, where a judge set her bond at $100,000.
She remained at the Lancaster County jail Tuesday evening.
Closen, who was hired in January 2015, worked her last day at the Regional Center on May 16, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services spokeswoman Julie Naughton said.
She declined to comment on the case specifically, citing federal and state legal protections for personnel and patient information.
But, Naughton said, hospital staff report allegations of inappropriate physical contact between Regional Center workers and patients to Adult Protective Services and the Nebraska State Patrol.
An internal investigation is also launched, she said.
"Appropriate action is taken when the investigations and reviews are concluded," Naughton said in the statement.