PHILADELPHIA (AP) – On Thursday, a nurse was charged with the death of Father Donald Trump's father, a former National Security Advisor, after the authorities said she had not undergone neurological examinations following his fall at a Philadelphia facility.
Christann Shyvin Gainey, 30, was charged with negligent homicide, neglect, and records of the death of HR McMaster Sr.
The 84-year-old retired US Army officer died on April 13, about eight hours after falling hitting his head in the Cathedral Village retirement community.
Surveillance video showed that Gainey, who worked as a contract nurse in Cathedral Village, did not perform a series of McMaster's eight neurological assessments as required, prosecutors said. Gainey allegedly falsified documents to make it look like she did.
Gainey's lawyer, Sharon Piper, said her client intended not to plead guilty. She declined to comment, as did Gainey's General Healthcare Resources employer at Plymouth Meeting.
McMaster's son, H. R. McMaster Jr. served as Trump's National Security Advisor from February 2017 until his retirement in March.
"Our father … was a tough and compassionate soldier and civil servant," McMaster's daughter Letitia McMaster said in a statement. "The best way to honor His memory is to do all we can to prevent others from suffering in the hands of those who have no compassion and abandon even the most basic standards of human decency." Today's charges are important Step forward to this connection. "
McMaster was admitted to rehabilitation after being struck at Cathedral Village on April 9. Three days later, according to court records, he was found by a nurse on the floor of his room, who alerted Gainey, the nurse.
The Cathedral Village policy calls for close neurological surveillance of patients who are beating their heads, including reviews every 15 minutes for the first hour and every hour for the next three hours.
A deputy nursing director told the police that after McMaster's death, she asked Gainey if the nurse had performed the required assessments of McMaster. Gainey replied that she had and said, "They were fine," according to a sworn statement from the police.
When the overseer noticed that the last entry in McMaster's neurological table indicated that an evaluation had been made 20 minutes after his death, Gainey said to her, "Well, I have Faked this one, "Affidavit said.
Police inspected surveillance videos for about eight hours and concluded that Gainey had not performed a single neurological examination.
A coroner decided that McMaster died from a blunt skull trauma.
"Gainey could have saved Mr. McMaster's life if she had just done her job, instead intentionally ignoring her job responsibilities, falsifying paperwork and luring her superiors to conceal this inexcusable behavior," said Democratic Attorney General Josh Shapiro at a press conference Thursday.
Cathedral Village said last week in a statement that there were "outside employees who were involved in the incident," restructured human resources to neurological controls and protocols for responding to suspected abuse and neglect, and started a new prevention initiative Fall.
The Pennsylvania Department of Health inspected Cathedral Village after McMaster's death, but the results are not yet available.
Rubinkam reported from northeastern Pennsylvania.