2018-06-13 from thestar.com

A staff member at the Caressant Care nursing home once referred to her co-worker, Elizabeth Wettlaufer, as an “angel of death,” a public inquiry has heard.

The chilling term, which popularly refers to serial killers who are caregivers, was used while Wettlaufer was still employed at the Woodstock, Ont., nursing home where she killed seven people in her care and assaulted two others with overdoses of insulin.

Registered nurse Karen Routledge, who worked at Caressant, recalled today a conversation where a co-worker used that term to describe Wettlaufer, who co-workers called Beth.

“It was in conversation, that Beth spent extra time with palliative residents and she had been overheard saying to a palliative resident that it was OK to die,” Routledge said, adding that Wettlaufer was apparently suggesting that death was better than severe suffering.

Routledge said she had no recollection of anyone comparing the death registry at the nursing home with Wettlaufer’s night shifts. The public inquiry was not told the name of the Caressant staff member who described Wettlaufer as the angel of death in conversation with Routledge.

Wettlaufer pleaded guilty in June 2017 to killing eight patients and assaulting or trying to kill six others. She confessed to her crimes, unprompted, in September 2016.

The public inquiry was called by the provincial government to determine the systemic failures that allowed Wettlaufer to keep killing and harming residents in her care without being stopped.

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