Story By: Alex Cope, Sub Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Central European News
This hospital worker has been arrested for trying to smother an 82-year-old female patient to death – and he previously killed two people in 1997 using the same method.
The suspect, named in reports as Juan Jose F. G., 49, was arrested in the Hospital of Alcorcon in the Spanish capital Madrid for allegedly trying to smother an 82-year-old patient who has not been named.
Local media report another patient in the room woke up as the suspect was allegedly smothering the woman and alerted staff who prevented the victim from dying.
A nurse reportedly shouted “what are you doing” at the suspect before working to save the victim and the hospital’s security staff detained him.
Reports state when questioned by police the suspect admitted he had placed the pillow on the victim’s head and when asked about the motive he simply said he did not know the victim.
Spanish newspaper El Mundo report police sources saying the suspect suffers from schizophrenia and he is now in the Psychiatric Unit of the hospital. He was reportedly working in the laundry services of the hospital.
El Mundo report the suspect smothered two people to death in 1997, killing Valeriana de la Fuente, 82, as she slept in the San Carlos Clinical Hospital in Madrid. He was arrested but two days later he killed an inmate who was sleeping in the infirmary ward of the Carabanchel prison by the same method.
Two years later he was acquitted with total exemption for mental disorder and sentenced to a stay of a maximum of 20 years in a Psychiatric Detention Centre. The National High Court ordered Insalud, a subsidiary of the Ministry of Health, to pay a fine of 120,000 EUR (103,593 GBP) for “omission of duty of care” and the money was split between the two children of the first victim.
He was released in 2007 but had to undergo periodic controls at a reference centre and was given medication.
A judge has now ordered his preventative detention and once he is moved to a prison he will be placed in its psychiatric ward, according to reports.
Spanish newspaper El Pais report police sources as saying: “The culprit is arrested and is in the psychiatric ward of the same hospital.”
Sources from the company the suspect worked for, Ilunion which belongs to the ONCE Foundation charity, said: “Juan Jose was working in the laundry service of the hospital for more than three years and passed all the necessary exams to begin working.”
The company’s website says its “main objective consists of carrying out integration programmes for the training and employment of people with disabilities. Promoting the creation of environments, products and globally accessible services.”
Local media report the suspect will be charged with attempted homicide but it is unclear if the charges have been brought forward yet.
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