The Latest: Doctor not criminally negligent in patient death
OSHKOSH, Wis. (AP) — The Latest on the investigation into the death of a Wisconsin mental hospital patient (all times local):
Prosecutors say a doctor who decided not to send a Wisconsin mental health hospital patient who fell to the emergency room for 14 hours isn’t criminally liable for the man’s death.
The 58-year-old Winnebago Mental Health Institution patient fell at 10 a.m. Oct. 15. He wasn’t taken to an emergency room until after midnight and died weeks later.
Winnebago County Assistant District Attorney Eric Sparr wrote in a memo to police Wednesday that the man had a history of self-harm and let himself fall backward from a standing position on Oct. 15 and hit his head his head on the ground. No one called the doctor for four hours, and his first examination revealed no bruises, bumps, swelling or vomiting.
Spaar wrote that the doctor’s actions didn’t arise to criminal culpability.
The patient was not identified in the memo.
Prosecutors have decided not to charge anyone in connection with the death of a Wisconsin mental hospital patient who waited more than 14 hours to be taken to an emergency room following a fall that left him unresponsive.
The Oshkosh Police Department issued a news release Wednesday saying the Winnebago County district attorney’s office has decided not to file any criminal charges in the death. The release said investigators determined the 58-year-old man “purposely fell.”
The release didn’t elaborate. Messages left at the district attorney’s office and at the police department weren’t immediately returned.
State inspectors say the patient fell at 10 a.m. on Oct. 15 and became unresponsive. It wasn’t until after midnight that he was taken to an emergency room. He died weeks later.
Prosecutors are investigating the death of a Wisconsin mental hospital patient who waited more than 14 hours to be taken to an emergency room after suffering a fall that left him unresponsive.
Winnebago County District Attorney Christian Gossett said Tuesday a prosecutor is reviewing the findings of a police investigation before deciding whether any charges are merited. The Oshkosh Northwestern reports the investigation comes at a time when the Winnebago Mental Health Institute is at risk of losing federal funds because of safety concerns raised by state and federal investigators.
State inspectors say the patient who died fell at 10 a.m. on Oct. 15 and became unresponsive, but it wasn’t until after midnight that he was taken to an emergency room. He died weeks later.
Information from: Oshkosh Northwestern Media, http://www.thenorthwestern.com