A registered nurse has been charged with two counts of murder and one count of assault over allegations she killed two elderly aged-care patients with insulin overdoses and left another hospitalised.
The 46-year-old woman was charged in Sydney late on Tuesday after being extradited from Victoria over the May deaths of 82-year-old Marie Darragh and 77-year-old Isobella Spencer, as well as the assault of another 88-year-old woman, police told AAP.
“She’s been charged with two counts of murder and one count of common assault,” a police spokeswoman told AAP on Tuesday night.
The woman, who will spend the night in custody after being refused police bail, is due before Sydney’s Central Local Court on Wednesday.
In May, Ms Darragh and Ms Spencer were found unconscious in their beds at the St Andrews Village Aged Care facility at Ballina and died a short time later.
Police allege a 46-year-old nurse, who was arrested in the southern Victorian town of Seaspray, administered fatal doses of insulin to Ms Darragh and Ms Spencer in the middle of the night.
They also claim the unnamed 88-year-old woman was woken in the middle of the night when the nurse tried to give her “unscheduled medication”.
Police say all three victims had complained about the nurse.
The nurse was away on days off after the deaths.
She then resigned and fled to Victoria, where she had previously used, homicide squad boss Detective Superintendent Mick Willing said.
The Melbourne Magistrates Court, where the nurse appeared on Tuesday to be extradited to NSW, heard she had never previously been in police custody and was taking medication for severe depression.
Following the arrest, St Andrews Aged Care CEO Pip Carter said the news was devastating.
“I want to reassure residents and the community that the safety and care of St Andrews’ residents always has been and always will be a priority,” Ms Carter said.
According to the Australian practitioners’ registry, the accused woman was first registered as a nurse in 2012.