Officials said that a nurse in northeast Italy might have killed
as many as 38 patients because she found them - or their
relatives - annoying.
Daniela Poggiali, who lives in the town of Lugo, was taken
into custody over the weekend.
The 42-year-old nurse was booked for the alleged slaying of
78-year-old patient Rosa Calderoni, who died from an
injection of potassium.
Calderoni had been admitted to the hospital with a routine
illness before she died unexpectedly.
As reported by the Central European News, tests showed
that Calderoni died with a high amount of potassium - which
can provoke cardiac arrest - in her bloodstream.
Calderoni's death triggered an investigation, which
reportedly revealed that 38 others had died mysteriously
while Poggiali was on duty.
Police have Poggiali's cellphone. NY Post reports that
the phone contains a photo she had snapped a few
months ago of herself; in it, she is giving a thumbs up
next to a patient who had died moments earlier.
"I can assure you that in all my professional years of seeing
shocking photos, there were few such as these," said
prosecutor Alessandro Mancini.
According to CEN, one of Poggiali's fellow nurses described her as a "cold person but always eager to work."
Another colleague said that the accused nurse was once
reported for giving powerful laxatives to patients at the end
of her shift to make work tougher for the nurses working
Daily Mail reports that Mancini said, "There are the other
38 cases of suspicious deaths and, of these, 10 are very
"Investigations are continuing, but there are insurmountable
difficulties," Mancini said.