The Trillium Center at Baptist Regional Medical Center is where troubled teens go to get help. But last spring police say a 14-year-old started a closer than normal relationship with her nurse, Barbara Pielack.
Police say once the teenager's treatment was done, Pielack took the young girl home with her. That's when the 57-year-old woman and her 64-year-old live in boyfriend, James Thornton allegedly sexually abused the young girl at least 12 times from May to August.
Neighbor Arthur Shephard says he first thought Pielack brought the girl home as part of her treatment.
“Never spoke of either one doing anything to her; I talked to the girl, my sons talked to the girl,” says Shephard.
Police say once the pair learned they were under investigation they headed for Georgia and once they got there, Pielack got another job at a hospital again as a nurse.
That was in November. They were indicted in December and police spent four months trying to find them.
“Sometimes it takes awhile to find these people when they (run) from jurisdiction and it took from December to February to locate their whereabouts,” says State Police Trooper Don Trosper.
The pair is only accused of abusing one teenager, but court records say that Pielack allegedly used her role as nurse to recruit children for her sexual pleasure.