CLARKSBURG, W.Va. — The attorney for a murder victim at the Clarksburg VA Medical Center has filed suit, directing responsibility toward the hospital.
Archie Edgell was among multiple veterans who died after being given fatal injections of insulin while he was being treated on the third floor for health concerns that were not believed to be life-threatening.
Edgell was sent to the VA for a medical evaluation as a first step toward being admitted to the nearby veterans nursing home.
The family’s attorney, Dino Colombo, indicated Edgell was diabetic, but his medication had been stopped with a slightly elevated sugar level.
So any insulin injections were not medically necessary.
Reta Mays, a former nursing assistant who worked the night shift, pleaded guilty this month to killing seven veterans and attempting to kill an eighth.
Her plea agreement acknowledged that she had used her time alone with veterans like Edgell to inject fatal doses of insulin, causing their blood sugar to plummet to levels where they could not be revived.
“He had four separate injections sites from where she injected him with insulin. We don’t know if she injected him all at once or over a two to three hour or two or three hour period of time,” Colombo said on MetroNews Talkline.
Edgell’s blood sugar levels crashed into the 20s. Medical staff were giving him glucose in an attempt to raise the sugar level and get it regulated again.
Colombo claims, and included in the lawsuit, that the hospital didn’t know and did nothing to find out what went wrong with Edgell’s health while in their care.
“They listed this man’s death as dementia. That had absolutely noting to do with his death. It just shows they didn’t care one bit. They didn’t look into this,” he said,
Colombo — along with Edgell’s family — believes there is a clear pattern by the hospital of not paying attention and failing to protect the patients, several of whom were known to have been murdered in the hospital and others whose deaths are still classified as “suspicious” but may never be proven to be the result of murder.
“She killed seven people and likely more. When does the hospital finally say, ‘Wait a minute what’s going on here?’ How many people have to die before a bell goes off and everybody says, ‘My gosh, we’ve got a big problem here,'” he said.
The veterans hospital has expressed sympathy for the victims.
“Our hearts go out to those affected by these tragic deaths,” stated Wesley Walls, spokesman for the Louis A. Johnson VA Medical Center.
Walls noted that the medical center discovered the allegations and reported them to VA’s independent inspector general more than two years ago. Clarksburg VA Medical Center also fired the individual at the center of the allegations.
“We’re glad the Department of Justice stepped in to push this investigation across the finish line and hopeful our court system will deliver the justice Clarksburg-area Veterans and families deserve,” Walls said.
.@ColomboLaw, attorney for the family of Archie Edgell, a veteran who was murdered at the VA Hospital in Clarksburg by Reta Mays, joins @HoppyKercheval on set to discuss the VA case. WATCH: https://t.co/wkudfIAoe1 pic.twitter.com/CZOYUyMgvz
— MetroNews (@WVMetroNews) July 28, 2020