Our Illinois nursing home neglect lawyers represent the family of one victim in the case involving a former nursing home employee who has been dubbed the “Angel of Death.” The circumstances around the case have stemmed both civil and criminal lawsuits. The civil suit that our firm is handling was filed by the family of one of the victims whose loved one was killed at the Woodstock Residence after the employee intentionally doled out dangerous medications.
Earlier this week the woman at the center of the situation pled guilty in the criminal case to felony criminal neglect. As such, she admitted that she gave a patient a drug that he had never been prescribed. Sentencing has yet to proceed, but she is facing up to three years in prison for her conduct. The guilty plea was an agreement reached with prosecutors in order to avoid potentially been found guilty of similar felony neglect in five other cases. Plea agreements do not necessarily reflect anything about the evidence or proof available in a certain case, and they are a common part of the criminal justice system.
As our Illinois nursing home neglect lawyer Steven Levin noted in the Chicago Sun-Times after the plea, “We’re saddened she didn’t have to face trial on all the charges, but we’re gratified she admitted some of her guilt.”
At least six patients suffered mysterious deaths at the facility which have been linked to suspicious drugs in their system. The bodies of several victims were exhumed, with a pathologist finding a link between the deaths and morphine overdose-a powerful painkiller. Prosecutors in the criminal case alleged that the nurse at the facility intentionally gave the overdose of the drug to several patients. The supervisors at the facility apparently did nothing to stop the reckless conduct.
While the guilty plea essentially ends most of the criminal component of the case, the civil Illinois nursing home neglect lawsuit is not concluded. Unlike the criminal case, this civil suit is does not involve potential criminal charges but seeks to hold those involved, including the nursing home which employed the wrongdoer, accountable to the families involved for the conduct. Families who lost loved ones because of the intentional conduct of the employee have a right to hold the facility that allowed the situation to occur liable under the civil justice system for their actions.
There is simply no excuse for the conduct of those involved in this Illinois nursing home abuse case. Medications remain incredibly powerful tools of control that must be used by those at these facilities in an incredibly careful and deliberate manner. It goes without saying that unauthorized use of these drugs can never be tolerated. Obviously, it is particularly repulsive when these drugs are used in a way that intentionally takes the lives of the seniors who receive the medication. Each Illinois nursing home neglect attorney at our firm is proud to stand up to those who are so callous with the lives of our vulnerable seniors. It is important for the justice system to properly account for this misconduct, provide redress, and ensure that future families are spared similar suffering.
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