A Wisconsin nurse was accused of cutting off the foot of a frostbite victim and telling her coworkers that she would show it in her taxidermy shop.
Mary K. Brown (38), was last week charged with the physical abuse of an elderly person and intentionally causing great bodily injury and mayhem. WQOW obtained a criminal complaint from Brown, 38. She was a hospice nurse at Spring Valley Health and Rehab Center in Spring Valley. Brown was assigned to care the unnamed male frostbite victim aged 62 years old.
In March, the patient was admitted to the hospital. By May, health officials had determined that he was very close to death. According to the criminal complaint, he had “severe coldbite” on his feet from the heat loss in his home.
Witnesses claimed that Brown had amputated the man’s right foot after it became necrotic. He only connected the body to the skin with a few tendons.
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WQOW reported that the man did not ask for his foot to go and that Brown had not been authorized by a doctor to perform the procedure.
Brown was arrested after investigators were contacted by the medical examiner’s Office in June. According to the complaint, the medical examiner stated that the right foot wasn’t attached to the man but was instead lying beside him.
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Brown stated to police that she did the amputation in order to make the patient feel more comfortable. She also said that she would do the same thing if she was in the same situation.
A second nurse was present in the room during the procedure and stated that she was holding the patient’s hands. According to the outlet, she reported that the man’s grip tightened and his mouth was a bit sore during the procedure. A second nurse from Pierce County Sheriff’s Office told investigators that she spoke with the man after the procedure and that he said that he felt everything, and it hurt. Another nurse stated that the procedure was incorrect.
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Brown told nurses that her family owned a taxidermy shop. She said that she wanted to preserve the foot, and then place it in the store. A sign that read, “wear your boots kids!” was also included.
WQOW was informed by Kevin Larson, the CEO and administrator of Spring Valley Senior Living and Health Care that Brown has resigned from his position at the center.
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“We have and will continue our cooperation with the investigation into the matter. He stated that the person named is not employed in our community.
Brown is due to court Dec. 6.