One Georgia nursing home employee was charged with murder and she and two others were indicted for elder abuse, following a video showing their treatment of a veteran in their care. Loyce Pickquet Agyeman, Wanda Nuckles, and Mable Turman allegedly laughed at a dying World War II veteran named James Dempsey, failing to come to his medical aid and save his life.
The incident happened four years ago at the Northeast Atlanta Rehabilitation Center, according to the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office. Former licensed nurse Agyeman was charged with murder and neglect to an elder person, while Nuckles, also a former licensed nurse, was charged with “depriving an elder person of essential services,” WXIA reports. Turman, who is a certified nurse assistant, was charged with neglect to an elder person. All three women were charged with concealing a death.
Dempsey’s family caught footage of the nurses on a hidden video camera, as they were heard laughing while attempting to get Dempsey’s oxygen machine to operate. Dempsey was seen crying out for help in the video and though Nuckles maintains that the nurses performed CPR on the man, the video didn’t show that.
According to Yvette Jones, a spokeswoman for the district attorney’s office, the “video surveillance shows the patient suffering in respiratory distress and repeatedly calling out for help. Soon after his distress calls, the victim became unresponsive.”
Retired nursing professor Elaine Harris, who is an adult critical care expert, told WXIA-TV: “In 43 years in nursing, I have never seen such disregard for human life in a health care setting, is what I witnessed.”
Those weighing in with comments on The Blaze were understandably outraged, with one person noting: “They are to blame for his death, no other way to look at it. A man who went to war to protect our freedoms died at the hands of his caretakers, they are murderers.”
One commenter noted: “This is just one case. While there are thousands of hard working and dedicated nursing home employees who really care about those in their care, there are cases of this kind of callous behavior across the country.”
Another commenter added: “Welcome to the wonderful world of institutionalized senior care. It’s true that these people are paid peanuts – no excuse – and the cost of keeping someone in a facility is incredibly expensive, so why are they not able to pay better wages to hire caring and compassionate people?”
A retired nurse weighed in with this comment: “This is one of the most horrible things I have ever seen. God bless this man’s soul. God bless his family also. These criminals are the absolute worst forms of humanity. They should be put away for a long time. Why were they still allowed to work for so long after the incident?”
One person took the opportunity to pay tribute to the fallen veteran, writing: “For our brother in arms, Dempsey, rest in peace, sir, you are relieved of duty, stand down. It is time to sleep, now.”