A former nurse in North Carolina has been charged with murder after allegedly giving lethal doses of insulin to three patients, killing two of them, officials announced on Tuesday.

Johnathan Howard Hayes, 47, who worked at Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, has been charged with two counts of murder and one count of attempted murder, Forsyth County District Attorney Jim O’Neill said at a news conference.

Hayes was arrested on Oct. 25 for the murder of Gwen Zelda Crawford and Vickie Lynne Lingerfelt and the attempted murder of Pamela Jean Little.

The former nurse was accused of giving a lethal dose of insulin to Crawford on Jan. 5, O’Neill said, adding that Crawford died three days later.

On Jan. 22, Hayes allegedly injected a second patient, Lingerfelt, with a lethal dose of insulin, a widely used drug in hospital settings for the management of hyperglycemia, or high blood glucose. O’Neill said Lingerfelt died less than a week later on Jan. 27.

Finally, the count of attempted murder against Hayes is related to the near-fatal dose of insulin given to Little back on Dec. 1, 2021, O’Neill said.

No details on a potential motive for the killings were shared as an investigation into the incidents is underway.

William Penn Jr., assistant chief of police with the Winston-Salem Police Department, who indicated that there may be more victims connected to Hayes, said he has dedicated a phone line for anyone who believes they may have been a victim.

O’Neill, who described Hayes as a “rogue nurse,” stated that all available evidence shows he acted alone and didn’t know the patients before the incidents.

“Johnathan Hayes has forfeited the honor of being called a nurse,” said O’Neill. “From this day forth, he’ll be known as a ‘defendant.’”

“No one in this community should hesitate or be reluctant to seek treatment from Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center or any of the outstanding healthcare facilities that we’re blessed to have here in Forsyth County,” the district attorney added.

Hayes was terminated from the hospital in March shortly after an initial internal investigation began and Winston-Salem police were notified to look into the issue, a spokeswoman for Atrium Health told Tuesday’s news conference.

“As soon as we identified a deviation in patient care as part of our established safety protocols, we took immediate action to remove the employee from the patient care environment and terminated his employment,” she said.

O’Neill said he and Winston-Salem detectives met in March with Atrium Health officials, who presented details of an internal investigation that led police to have probable cause to charge Hayes.

Anyone who believes they’ve been impacted by Hayes can call the Winston-Salem Police Department’s dedicated phone line at 336-757-0357.

From NTD News


Lorenz Duchamps is a news writer for NTD, The Epoch Times’ sister media, focusing primarily on the United States, world, and entertainment news.

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