‘Not up to her to be God!’

Friends, fam­i­lies re­act to new charges against ex-nurse

The Daily Press (Timmins) - - COMMUNITY LISTINGS - Liam Casey

WOOD­STOCK, Ont. — A for­mer On­tario nurse ac­cused of killing eight se­niors in her care shuf­fled into a court­room Fri­day to face six more charges, as friends and fam­ily mem­bers of the al­leged vic­tims sat qui­etly — some sti­fling tears.

Wear­ing a green prison sweat­shirt and pants, Elizabeth Wet­t­laufer made her way to the pris­oner’s box — the only sound in the court­room com­ing from the shack­les clamped around her an­kles.

The 49-year-old from Wood­stock, Ont., faces a to­tal of 14 charges, in­clud­ing eight counts of first­de­gree mur­der, four counts of at­tempted mur­der and two counts of ag­gra­vated as­sault. Court doc­u­ments al­lege Wet­t­laufer in­jected the six new al­leged vic­tims with in­sulin.

Po­lice al­lege the crimes took place over the last decade in three On­tario long-term care fa­cil­i­ties, where Wet­t­laufer worked as a reg­is­tered nurse, and a pri­vate home.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors said four of the six al­leged vic­tims re­lated to the new charges have died, but their deaths were not “at­trib­uted” to Wet­t­laufer.

A woman whose fa­ther was among the al­leged vic­tims said she came to the court­room to see Wet­t­laufer in per­son.

“She needs help,” said a teary Su­san Hor­vath, whose fa­ther, Ar­pad Hor­vath, died in 2014. “She’s lost in this world and she made a lot of fam­i­lies in pain for the rest of their lives.”

Don­ald Martin, whose friend Maurice Granat is among the al­leged vic­tims, was strug­gling to keep his emo­tions in check.

“It’s not up to her to be God,” he said. “It’s not up to her to de­cide that that man was to die.”

Po­lice did not pro­vide de­tails on the al­leged in­ci­dents, but said the in­ves­ti­ga­tion was on­go­ing.

“We’ll just fol­low the ev­i­dence and take it to where it leads us,” said Sgt. David Rek­tor of the On­tario Provin­cial Po­lice. He en­cour­aged any­one who might have in­for­ma­tion on the case to con­tact po­lice.

Out­side court, rel­a­tives of the al­leged vic­tims ex­plained why they had at­tended the hear­ing.

“We want her to see how much hurt and how much pain we have for our loved ones and how much pain she’s cre­ated,” said An­drea Sil­cox, whose 84-year-old fa­ther, James Sil­cox, died in Au­gust 2007.

“She needs to see the pain in the faces that still ex­ist, the loved ones that she had left be­hind.”

The new charges against Wet­t­laufer in­clude the at­tempted mur­ders of Wayne Hedges, 57, be­tween Septem­ber and De­cem­ber 2008, Michael Prid­dle, 63, be­tween Jan­uary 2008 and De­cem­ber 2009 — both res­i­dents of the Ca­res­sant Care nurs­ing home — San­dra Towler, 77, a res­i­dent of Telfer Place in Brant County, Ont., in Septem­ber 2015, and 68-year-old Bev­erly Ber­tram, who was at a pri­vate home in Ox­ford County, Ont., in Au­gust of last year.

Rev­era Inc., which owns Telfer Place, said they were shocked at the al­le­ga­tions, but that the al­leged vic­tim is still a res­i­dent in their care and is do­ing well.

Wet­t­laufer also faces two counts of ag­gra­vated as­sault against 87-year-old Clotilde Adri­ano and 90-year-old Al­bina Demedeiros — both Ca­res­sant Care res­i­dents — be­tween June and De­cem­ber of 2007.

Ca­res­sant Care said they are co-op­er­at­ing with the po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

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