Grand Jury Begins Investigating 4 Hospital Deaths In Days After Hurricane Katrina

Tuesday, March 6th 2007, 7:30 pm
By: News On 6

NEW ORLEANS (AP) _ A grand jury began investigating the deaths of four patients at a sweltering, flooded hospital after Hurricane Katrina on Tuesday, a prosecutor's spokesman said.

A doctor and two nurses were arrested on murder charges after the state attorney general said they gave patients lethal injections after Katrina hit Aug. 29, 2005. Dr. Anna Pou and nurses Lori Budo and Cheri Landry have not been formally charged and have been free on bond since their arrest last summer.

With no electricity, temperatures rose to 110 degrees at Memorial Medical Center, and the three had determined the patients were either too ill or too incapacitated to be moved in the aftermath of the hurricane, authorities said.

At least 34 patients died at the eight-story, 317-bed hospital.

Dalton Savwoir, a spokesman for district attorney Eddie Jordan, confirmed the grand jury had begun looking at the case. Jordan refused to comment, saying his police was not to talk about grand jury matters.