Nurse Arrested for Allegedly Leaving Elderly Alone

Deputies say a nurse was arrested for leaving elderly patients alone after an 88-year-old was injured.

Pinellas County deputies say 60-year-old Epifania V. Fitzgerald
put one of the patients at an assisted living facility in charge
and left.

When she returned 2 1/2 hours later, authorities were there.

One of the facility's residents, a woman, had slipped and fallen in the bathroom. Another resident had called 911.

Fitzgerald was supposed to have been watching out for 21 elderly patients.

Officials say she was charged her with one count of abuse and neglect of the elderly and one count of possession of Vicodin.

Authorities would not identify the facility. Fitzgerald remained in jail Sunday facing a bond of $12,000.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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