NY prosecutors bring charges in cover up of patient's death in psych ward

March 18, 2011

New York prosecutors have charged two medical personnel in the death of a Jamaican psychiatric patient more than two years ago.

Prosecutors said a nurse and an aide at the sprawling Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn have been charged with allowing Esmin Green, 49, to die on the floor of the psychiatric ward and then covering up her death.

New York City's Department of Investigation investigated Green's death and you can read their final report here.

Green was recorded on a surveillance camera tape lying face-down in the emergency room for nearly an hour on June 19, 2008, ignored by staffers and security personnel.

Court documents said that nursing aide Royal Easton (mistakenly reported as "Easton Royal"), 53, allegedly wrote in the observation sheet that Green was doing fine at 6:00 am – in the midst of the excruciating 57 minutes the dying woman spent on the floor.

Prosecutors said Royal was arrested on Tuesday and charged with reckless endangerment and falsifying business records.

Another nurse, whose name was not released, had pleaded guilty last month to similar charges, prosecutors said.

A previous report by the New York City's Department of Investigation mentioned that one nurse, identified only as Gonzalo, admitted to making false entries on Green's progress notes after she died.

“All those who are in any way responsible for this wrongful death and cover-up should be brought to justice,” said Sanford Rubenstein, the lawyer who represented Green's daughter in reaching a two million US dollar settlement with the city.

The city’s Medical Examiner’s Office said the Jamaican immigrant, who waited some 24 hours in the hospital’s psychiatric waiting room, died of blood clots.

Source: "Two charged in US over death of Jamaican patient," Jamaica Observer, March 18, 2011.


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