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Westlake Legal Group > News Media (Page 195)

The week in pictures, Oct. 12 – Oct. 18

Westlake Legal Group 01_IMG_0979_moon04_10152019 The week in pictures, Oct. 12 - Oct. 18 fox-news/world fox-news/us fox news fnc/world fnc article 2e0baa09-628c-5563-b32e-084a76e2560a

https://a57.foxnews.com/static.foxnews.com/foxnews.com/content/uploads/2019/10/918/516/08_AP19288772219934.jpg?ve=1&tl=1

Relatives touch the coffin and photo of police officer Pablo Sergio Reynel, one of a group of officers killed in the line of duty, during a memorial service at the public security department headquarters for Michoacan, in Morelia, Mexico, Oct. 15, 2019. 

AP Photo/Marco Ugarte

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Westlake Legal Group 01_IMG_0979_moon04_10152019 The week in pictures, Oct. 12 - Oct. 18 fox-news/world fox-news/us fox news fnc/world fnc article 2e0baa09-628c-5563-b32e-084a76e2560a   Westlake Legal Group 01_IMG_0979_moon04_10152019 The week in pictures, Oct. 12 - Oct. 18 fox-news/world fox-news/us fox news fnc/world fnc article 2e0baa09-628c-5563-b32e-084a76e2560a

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Can our friends trust the US as an ally? Most Americans say Trump’s Syria move has hurt

CLOSEWestlake Legal Group icon_close Can our friends trust the US as an ally? Most Americans say Trump's Syria move has hurt

President Trump said Syria has “got a lot of sand” while talking about Turkey’s invasion of the country. USA TODAY

WASHINGTON — Most Americans believe that President Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. troops from the Syrian border has damaged America’s reputation around the world as a reliable ally, a new USA TODAY/Ipsos Poll finds. 

Even Republicans, typically in Trump’s corner, by 44%-36% say the nation’s reputation has been hurt.

Many of those surveyed express uncertainty about what to think; only half say they are very or somewhat familiar with rapidly changing developments in the region. The abrupt U.S. withdrawal opened the door to a Turkish military assault on the Kurds, who had been aligned with U.S. forces against ISIS. The White House announced Thursday that Turkey had agreed to a five-day ceasefire to allow Kurds to withdraw from the area.

Overall, a 37% plurality of Americans calls the president’s decision to withdraw the small contingent of U.S. troops wrong because it upset stability in a dangerous region; 27% say it was right because the United States has too many military commitments around the world. More than one in four Republicans see the decision as wrong.

Turkey cease-fire: Mike Pence announces that Turkey agreed to a five-day cease-fire in its Syria assault

Opposition swells among those who are more familiar with what’s happening in the region. By nearly 2-1, 58%-30%, they say the president made the wrong call.

“The decision to remove troops from northern Syria has not proven to be popular with the American public,” said Cliff Young, the president of Ipsos. “While Americans remain divided on most topics, there is some surprising unanimity here, especially among people more familiar with the decision.”

Overall, 54% say the withdrawal has damaged the nation’s standing as a trusted ally. 

The decision has put Trump at odds not only with some GOP voters but also with GOP lawmakers. In the House Wednesday, more than two-thirds of Republicans joined every Democrat in passing a resolution that condemned the withdrawal as a step that endangered the Kurds and benefited Russia, Syria and Iran.

More: Lindsey Graham to President Trump: `I will hold you accountable’ on Turkey’s actions in Syria

In the USA TODAY/Ipsos poll, Americans by more than 3-1, 61%-19%, say the nation has an obligation to protect the Kurds, who have been U.S. allies in battles in Syria and Iraq. That sentiment crosses party lines, including 72% of Democrats and 60% of Republicans.

And there is bipartisan concern that the ISIS fighters who have escaped Kurdish prisons in the chaos are likely to pose a terrorist threat down the road: 54% predict they will be a threat in the region, 44% say they will be a threat in the United States. 

Trump did get credit from two-thirds of Republicans for delivering on his campaign promise to “end endless wars.” By 57%-26%, Republicans say they back his Syria policy, despite concerns about its consequences.

Overall, however, just 31% of those surveyed say they support the president’s policy on Syria.

The online poll of 1,006 adults, taken Wednesday and Thursday, has a credibility interval of 3.5 percentage points.

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Hackers are draining ATMs across the US

Westlake Legal Group komandokomandokomandopic3 Hackers are draining ATMs across the US fox-news/tech/topics/hackers fox news fnc/tech fnc Brooke Crothers article 1cfdf119-de23-5424-944a-9e4f8eb1b46f

ATM hackers may have found a new home in the U.S., according to a recent report.

The number of so-called “jackpotting” attacks – getting ATMs to spit out all of the cash inside – in regions including the U.S. and Latin America has gone up, according to a joint investigation by Motherboard and German broadcaster Bayerischer Rundfunk. Large-scale ATM cash-out hacking had mostly been an overseas criminal enterprise.

The U.S. is a “quite popular” target for ATM hackers, a source told Motherboard. These types of cash-out crimes have been around for a while, as noted in a report from Trend Micro, a cybersecurity firm.

‘CIA SEXTORTION’ EMAIL SCAM MAKES ITS DEBUT

In 2013, a cybergang stole $45 million from ATMs around the world, the BBC reported. More than $12 million were taken from cashpoints in Japan using cloned ATM cards in 2016. The notorious Carbanak gang has stolen as much as $1 billion from banks around the world, including schemes that cash out ATMs.

Last year, hackers broke into computers at an Indian bank and walked off with $11.5 million in unauthorized ATM withdrawals — an incident that happened after the FBI issued a warning about the imminent scheme.

Krebs on Security, a cybersecurity publication, described how it works. “Just prior to executing on ATM cash-outs, the intruders will remove many fraud controls at the financial institution, such as maximum withdrawal amounts and any limits on the number of customer ATM transactions daily.”

With jackpotting, criminals use malware or hardware to get an ATM to dispense cash — sometimes into the hands of waiting “mules,” according to Trend Micro’s report. “ATM attacks continue to reap financial rewards for their perpetrators, which means we should not expect them to let up.”

A major weak point is that many ATMs are essentially ancient Windows machines, with a source telling Motherboard “these are very old, slow machines.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Westlake Legal Group komandokomandokomandopic3 Hackers are draining ATMs across the US fox-news/tech/topics/hackers fox news fnc/tech fnc Brooke Crothers article 1cfdf119-de23-5424-944a-9e4f8eb1b46f   Westlake Legal Group komandokomandokomandopic3 Hackers are draining ATMs across the US fox-news/tech/topics/hackers fox news fnc/tech fnc Brooke Crothers article 1cfdf119-de23-5424-944a-9e4f8eb1b46f

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Patrick Mahomes injury draws unsettling reactions from Chiefs teammates: ‘It looked deformed’

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce was among those who appeared to be left unsettled after his teammate and reigning NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes reportedly dislocated his kneecap during Thursday night’s game against the Denver Broncos.

Mahomes suffered the injury in the second quarter of the Chiefs’ 30-6 blowout of the Broncos. Video appeared to show the team’s medical staff popping his dislocated kneecap back into place.

PATRICK MAHOMES APPEARS TO HAVE KNEECAP POPPED BACK IN PLACE AFTER INJURY IN CHIEFS-BRONCOS GAME

Kelce was asked about the injury after the game.

“His knee didn’t even look like a knee. It was all out of whack,” he said, according to ESPN.

Chiefs offensive lineman Laurent Duvernay-Tardif relayed to reporters what Mahomes was saying when he went down.

PATRICK MAHOMES’ ANKLE INJURY LEADS CHIEFS FANS TO TURN TO HIGHER POWER IN HOPES HE HEALS QUICKER

“He was saying, ‘It’s out, it’s out,’” Duvernay-Tardif said. “Nobody really understood what he meant at that time and then we saw it. That’s when we started panicking.”

Adam Reiter, the team’s center, had Mahomes on top of him during the play.

Westlake Legal Group NFL-Patrick-Mahomes11 Patrick Mahomes injury draws unsettling reactions from Chiefs teammates: 'It looked deformed' Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/patrick-mahomes fox news fnc/sports fnc article 75a6e5f3-477e-500c-af05-e3cd49e784d1

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) is helped by trainers after getting injured against the Denver Broncos during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019, in Denver.  (AP)

“I think I was just yelling, ‘Get off me,’ but I didn’t realize it was him,” Reiter said. “And everybody’s telling me, I’m hearing from the refs, ‘Just stay still, stay still.’ And I’m just laying on my stomach face down. I just had to listen to the refs and not move. As soon as I realized it was his voice, I was like, all right, I’m not moving an inch.”

According to the Kansas City Star, Tyreek Hill screamed into the air and took off his helmet in frustration while Demarcus Robinson had to get away from the scene as quickly as possible.

“It looked deformed,” Robinson said, according to the Star.

Mahomes is expected to miss at least three weeks with a dislocated kneecap, the NFL Network reported Friday. There is reportedly “real optimism” he will be able to play after those three weeks. He is set to undergo an MRI at some point on Friday.

It’s unclear what the Chiefs will do at quarterback at this point. Veteran Matt Moore is the team’s backup.

Mahomes let fans know he remained optimistic after the injury.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ALL-NEW FOXBUSINESS.COM

“Awesome team win! Love my brothers! Thank you for all the prayers! Everything looking good so far!” he tweeted.

Westlake Legal Group NFL-Patrick-Mahomes11 Patrick Mahomes injury draws unsettling reactions from Chiefs teammates: 'It looked deformed' Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/patrick-mahomes fox news fnc/sports fnc article 75a6e5f3-477e-500c-af05-e3cd49e784d1   Westlake Legal Group NFL-Patrick-Mahomes11 Patrick Mahomes injury draws unsettling reactions from Chiefs teammates: 'It looked deformed' Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/patrick-mahomes fox news fnc/sports fnc article 75a6e5f3-477e-500c-af05-e3cd49e784d1

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Patrick Mahomes injury draws unsettling reactions from Chiefs teammates: ‘It looked deformed’

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce was among those who appeared to be left unsettled after his teammate and reigning NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes reportedly dislocated his kneecap during Thursday night’s game against the Denver Broncos.

Mahomes suffered the injury in the second quarter of the Chiefs’ 30-6 blowout of the Broncos. Video appeared to show the team’s medical staff popping his dislocated kneecap back into place.

PATRICK MAHOMES APPEARS TO HAVE KNEECAP POPPED BACK IN PLACE AFTER INJURY IN CHIEFS-BRONCOS GAME

Kelce was asked about the injury after the game.

“His knee didn’t even look like a knee. It was all out of whack,” he said, according to ESPN.

Chiefs offensive lineman Laurent Duvernay-Tardif relayed to reporters what Mahomes was saying when he went down.

PATRICK MAHOMES’ ANKLE INJURY LEADS CHIEFS FANS TO TURN TO HIGHER POWER IN HOPES HE HEALS QUICKER

“He was saying, ‘It’s out, it’s out,’” Duvernay-Tardif said. “Nobody really understood what he meant at that time and then we saw it. That’s when we started panicking.”

Adam Reiter, the team’s center, had Mahomes on top of him during the play.

Westlake Legal Group NFL-Patrick-Mahomes11 Patrick Mahomes injury draws unsettling reactions from Chiefs teammates: 'It looked deformed' Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/patrick-mahomes fox news fnc/sports fnc article 75a6e5f3-477e-500c-af05-e3cd49e784d1

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) is helped by trainers after getting injured against the Denver Broncos during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019, in Denver.  (AP)

“I think I was just yelling, ‘Get off me,’ but I didn’t realize it was him,” Reiter said. “And everybody’s telling me, I’m hearing from the refs, ‘Just stay still, stay still.’ And I’m just laying on my stomach face down. I just had to listen to the refs and not move. As soon as I realized it was his voice, I was like, all right, I’m not moving an inch.”

According to the Kansas City Star, Tyreek Hill screamed into the air and took off his helmet in frustration while Demarcus Robinson had to get away from the scene as quickly as possible.

“It looked deformed,” Robinson said, according to the Star.

Mahomes is expected to miss at least three weeks with a dislocated kneecap, the NFL Network reported Friday. There is reportedly “real optimism” he will be able to play after those three weeks. He is set to undergo an MRI at some point on Friday.

It’s unclear what the Chiefs will do at quarterback at this point. Veteran Matt Moore is the team’s backup.

Mahomes let fans know he remained optimistic after the injury.

CLICK HERE FOR THE ALL-NEW FOXBUSINESS.COM

“Awesome team win! Love my brothers! Thank you for all the prayers! Everything looking good so far!” he tweeted.

Westlake Legal Group NFL-Patrick-Mahomes11 Patrick Mahomes injury draws unsettling reactions from Chiefs teammates: 'It looked deformed' Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/patrick-mahomes fox news fnc/sports fnc article 75a6e5f3-477e-500c-af05-e3cd49e784d1   Westlake Legal Group NFL-Patrick-Mahomes11 Patrick Mahomes injury draws unsettling reactions from Chiefs teammates: 'It looked deformed' Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports/nfl/kansas-city-chiefs fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/person/patrick-mahomes fox news fnc/sports fnc article 75a6e5f3-477e-500c-af05-e3cd49e784d1

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Fighting Continues In Kurdish-Held Syrian Town Despite Cease-Fire

Westlake Legal Group 5da9970a210000371334a564 Fighting Continues In Kurdish-Held Syrian Town Despite Cease-Fire

CEYLANPINAR, Turkey (AP) — Fighting continued Friday morning in a northeast Syrian border town at the center of the fight between Turkey and Kurdish forces, despite a U.S.-brokered cease-fire that went into effect overnight.

Shelling and gunfire could be heard in and around Ras al-Ayn as smoke billowed from locations near the border with Turkey and the Turkish town of Ceylanpinar. The fighting died down by mid-morning while smoke continued to rise.

Elsewhere along the border calm seemed to prevail, with no fighting heard along the border from Ras al-Ayn to Tal Abyad, a Syrian border town about 100 kilometers to the west.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a war monitor, reported intermittent clashes in Ras al-Ayn but relative calm elsewhere since Thursday night, when Turkey and the U.S. agreed to a five-day cease-fire to halt the Turkish offensive against Kurdish-led forces in the region.

The agreement — reached after hours of negotiations in Turkey’s capital of Ankara between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence — requires the Kurdish fighters to vacate a swath of territory in Syria along the Turkish border. That arrangement would largely solidify the position Turkey has gained after days of fighting.

The shelling Friday came even after the commander of Kurdish-led forces in Syria, Mazloum Abdi, told Kurdish TV late on Thursday: “We will do whatever we can for the success of the cease-fire agreement.” But one Kurdish official, Razan Hiddo, declared that the Kurdish people would refuse to live under Turkish occupation.

Kurdish fighters have already been driven out of much, but not all, of a swath of territory that stretches about 100 kilometers (60 miles) along the middle of the Syrian-Turkish border, between Ras al-Ayn and Tal Abyad.

But Kurdish forces are still entrenched in Ras al-Ayn, where on Thursday they had been fiercely battling Turkish-backed Syrian fighters trying to take the town. Whether the Kurdish fighters pull out of Ras al-Ayn will likely be an early test of the accord.

Turkish troops and their allied Syrian fighters launched the offensive two days after U.S. President Donald Trump suddenly announced he was withdrawing American troops from the border area.

The Kurds were U.S. allies in the fight against the Islamic State but came under assault after Trump ordered U.S. troops to pull out. The Kurdish-led forces have since invited the Syrian government’s military, backed by Russia, to deploy there to protect them from Turkey. Syrian troops have already rolled into several key points along the border.

Trump framed the U.S.-brokered cease-fire deal with Turkey as “a great day for civilization” but its effect was largely to mitigate a foreign policy crisis widely seen to be of his own making.

Turkey considers the Kurdish fighters terrorists because of their links to outlawed Kurdish rebels fighting inside Turkey since the 1980s.

Turkey’s pro-government dominated media hailed the cease-fire agreement as a clear win for Erdogan. “Great Victory” read Yeni Safak’s banner headline. “Turkey got everything it wanted.” Sabah newspaper headlined: “We won both on the field and on the (negotiating) table.”

Suzan Fraser in Ankara and Mehmet Guzel in Ceylanpinar contributed.

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You’ll Never Guess Who’s Playing Riddler In ‘The Batman’

Westlake Legal Group 5da9860a2100000e15ad32c0 You’ll Never Guess Who’s Playing Riddler In ‘The Batman’

There is no longer a question mark as to who is playing The Riddler in “The Batman.”

Dano’s green and lean quizzing machine has some prominent names to live up to. Frank Gorshin and John Astin played the bad guy on TV in the 1960s while Jim Carrey did the honors on the big screen in “Batman Forever” (1995).

The movie also announced this week that Zoe Kravitz was playing Catwoman as the cast of formidable foes takes shape to torment Robert Pattinson’s Batman.

Dano directed and starred in Showtime’s 2018 prisoner series “Escape At Dannemora,” for which he earned an Emmy nomination. He also appeared in “There Will Be Blood” (2007) and “Love & Mercy” (2014), the latter yielding a supporting actor Golden Globe nomination for Dano.

Warner Bros. is eyeing a June 25, 2021, release for “The Batman.”

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‘Absolutely No Respect for Human Life’: Trump Compares Turkish Assault on Kurds to Two Kids Fighting in a Parking Lot; “The president is talking about genocidal slaughter and hundreds of thousands of war victims like it’s a playground squabble.”

Westlake Legal Group 9_XJJROjbMyXCMfrrHGG5xZ_x9HgPSiSovdwbJcjHUw 'Absolutely No Respect for Human Life': Trump Compares Turkish Assault on Kurds to Two Kids Fighting in a Parking Lot; "The president is talking about genocidal slaughter and hundreds of thousands of war victims like it's a playground squabble." r/politics

During a campaign rally in Dallas, Texas Thursday night, President Donald Trump compared the Turkish assault on Kurds in Syria that he enabled—which has killed dozens and displaced an estimated 160,000 civilians—to two kids fighting in a parking lot.

“Sometimes you have to let ’em fight,” said Trump to cheers from his supporters. “Like two kids in a lot, you gotta let ’em fight, then you pull ’em apart.”

Trump’s callous and mocking remarks about an attack in which people were maimed, tortured, and executed left observers appalled.

“This little quip speaks volumes,” tweeted S.V. Dáte, White House correspondent for HuffPost. “The president is talking about genocidal slaughter and hundreds of thousands of war victims like it’s a playground squabble.”

The comments, wrote another critic, show the president “has absolutely no respect for human life.”

Trump just continues to embarrass and destroy the credibility of the United States, now at the cost of actual human lives.

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Nurses who kill: Medical murderers and the mystery of the Clarksburg VA hospital in West Virginia

CLOSEWestlake Legal Group icon_close Nurses who kill: Medical murderers and the mystery of the Clarksburg VA hospital in West Virginia

George Nelson Shaw Sr. died at a VA hospital in West Virginia in 2018. His death was ruled a homicide by an Armed Forces medical examiner. It’s one of 10 deaths under investigation by authorities. Jack Gruber, USA TODAY

Nurse Charles Cullen worked at nine hospitals in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, killing dozens of patients by spiking saline IV bags with deadly doses of drugs physicians did not order and patients did not need.

Donald Harvey, who worked as an orderly among other hospital jobs, roamed units at three hospitals in Cincinnati and Kentucky where he killed more than two dozen patients.

The health care killers used insulin, heart drugs or poisons such as cyanide. They had access to frail patients on hospital floors. Ultimately, they were convicted of murdering patients under their care.

As investigators assemble clues in at least two homicides and at least eight other suspicious deaths at a Clarksburg, West Virginia, Veterans Affairs hospital, past examples of health care workers who killed patients with unneeded medications — including insulin, the drug suspected in the VA deaths — show how difficult such cases can be to detect and prove. 

‘I trusted those people’: Red flags missed, limiting evidence in potential serial killer case at VA hospital

Cullen moved from hospital to hospital, taking new jobs when managers began to suspect his deadly ways. Although investigators collected forensic evidence implicating him, prosecutors did not charge him until a fellow nurse, wearing a wire, coaxed a confession.

Harvey’s arrest was a matter of luck. He used cyanide to poison a man hospitalized after a motorcycle crash, unwittingly triggering an Ohio law requiring autopsies on all motorcycle fatalities. The medical examiner who performed the autopsy had a genetic ability to smell cyanide, which triggered the investigation.

There are no formal statistics tracking the number of health care workers convicted of murdering patients. Such cases are distinct from medical errors in which doctors, nurses or other clinicians inadvertently harm or even kill patients through carelessness or mistakes.

These serial killers are often called “angels of death,” but those familiar with their behavior say the moniker rarely describes their crimes. More often, they kill with intent and out of compulsion, not compassion.

Elizabeth Yardley, a criminology professor at Birmingham City University in England, studies nurses who kill. In a 2014 research paper, she identified 16 convicted of murder over the past four decades in the United States, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom.

Insulin was the drug most frequently used to poison patients. But health care killers also used sedatives, muscle relaxers, blood thinners, heart drugs and even bleach. Some started with one drug and moved to another as the pace of their killings increased.

In most cases, the killers poisoned patients with drugs taken from the hospital where they worked. Some nurses had legitimate access to the medicines. Others stole the drugs, bypassing safeguards to secure medication. 

“This is the challenge of investigating homicide in a health care setting — the suspects you are looking at are members of a staff,” Yardley said. “Those members have legitimate access to victims. They have the opportunity to harm them.

“It can be an investigative nightmare.”

‘You can’t prove anything’

Cullen’s string of suspicious deaths began in the late 1980s, after he landed his first nursing job through a staffing agency at Saint Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, New Jersey.

As recounted in the book “The Good Nurse” by journalist Charles Graeber, Saint Barnabas nurses in February 1991 noticed two patients in the hospital’s critical care unit mysteriously crashing from low blood sugar levels. The patients appeared to get better as soon as they were disconnected from an IV bag.

Hospital security staff discovered the IV bags contained insulin, which wasn’t ordered by doctors. Investigators found small needle marks on the perimeter of the bags. A review of records uncovered reports of several patients unexpectedly crashing from hypoglycemia.

‘Breaks my heart’: After 10 suspicious deaths at VA hospital, veterans demand answers. ‘It’s scary – really scary’

Making the case for foul play was not easy. The patients had a range of health conditions that made them vulnerable, and completing a complex medical investigation proved difficult. Hospital security installed cameras in the medical storage room and the administration tightened requirements for staff accessing insulin.

Cullen was interviewed about the tampered IV bags but he was defiant. According to “The Good Nurse” he told security, “You can’t prove anything.”

Cullen was right. Though the hospital suspected him, it lacked evidence to prove he sabotaged IV bags by injecting insulin, “sending them out like grenades” to vulnerable patients, as Graeber wrote. And when security informed the local police department, the department’s chief had little interest in taking on the case.

Saint Barnabas moved Cullen off the work schedule. He easily found another nursing job, a pattern that continued over the next decade and a half at hospital after hospital.

The hospitals did not collect meaningful evidence. They did not publicly report “sentinel events” — unexpected incidents involving death or serious injury — even though they were required to under federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid rules for all participating hospitals.

“He was caught over and over again, or at least suspected strongly enough that he was removed from the hospital,” Graeber said. “What happened time and time again is he was moved on with neutral or positive references.”

Hospital oversight: ‘I trusted those people.’ Red flags missed, limiting evidence in potential serial killer case at VA hospital

Cullen’s actions finally caught up to him at New Jersey’s Somerset Medical Center, after four people died from non-prescribed doses of insulin and the heart drug digoxin. He was suspected, but the hospital wanted to conduct its own probe before notifying outside investigators.

More patients died before Somerset administrators, under pressure from the director of the state’s poison control center, finally went to police. Detectives, however, could not gather enough forensic evidence to seal the investigation. They convinced a nurse who was friendly with Cullen to wear a recording device. During a conversation, Cullen told her he wanted to “go down fighting.” 

He confessed, pleaded guilty to killing 13 patients at Somerset and agreed to cooperate with authorities in lieu of the death penalty. He was sentenced to life in prison. It’s unknown how many people he killed during his nearly two decades of nursing. Cullen told detectives he killed as many as 40, but Graeber’s research put the likely death toll at about 400.

Before he was arrested, Cullen knew Somerset suspected him in the string of deaths. He was preparing to move on to another hospital like he had so many times before.

“Cullen had another job lined up,” Graeber said. “It really did take a confession to be able to put him away. Everything else was circumstantial, difficult to prove.”

Testing for insulin is tricky

Vincent Marks, a pathologist and retired University of Surrey professor, is among the world’s foremost experts on insulin killings.

He became interested in low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, as a doctor in the late 1950s. He discovered a patient with unexplained low blood sugar had a tumor that was secreting insulin. He went on to write the book, “Insulin Murders: True Life Cases.”

He said the first known case of insulin murder occurred in 1957 and involved an English nurse, Kenneth Barlow, who was convicted of poisoning his wife.

“He was successful, but he didn’t really succeed,” said Marks. “It takes such a long time to die from insulin poisoning. He gave up and drowned her.”

To prove homicide by insulin, Marks said investigators need foresight to collect the right evidence and perform the right tests in a timely manner. Blood must be drawn while the patient is alive or within hours of death, he said, and both the presence of insulin and an absence of C-peptide, which measures insulin made by the body, must be detected.

Insulin homicides: ‘Definitely suspicious’: Investigation into patient deaths at West Virginia VA hospital expands

Immunoassay tests commonly used to measure insulin might not be sensitive enough to prove fatal insulin doses.  A newer technology, called mass spectrometry, is often required but rarely used, Marks said.

“Unless they actually have thought about it and collected the blood … done the tests during life or immediately after death, and used the best possible methods, it can be deceptive,” he said. “It is extremely difficult to prove.”

It’s especially important to use correct testing when a victim is injected with insulin analogs, a newer synthetic form of insulin preferred by many people with diabetes, Marks added.

“If you can identify an analog in somebody’s blood, or vitreous (eyeball tissue) you know somebody has been doing something they shouldn’t have done,” he said. “If you find natural insulin, you can’t be sure whether it is from the bottle or from somebody’s own body.”

As part of the recent investigation into the suspicious deaths at the West Virginia VA hospital, the bodies of Army veteran Felix Kirk McDermott, 82, and Air Force Veteran George Nelson Shaw, 81, were exhumed.

Both deaths were classified as homicides. A federal medical examiner concluded insulin was injected into McDermott’s abdomen and Shaw’s autopsy revealed injection sites tested positive for insulin. Neither man had diabetes. The insulin injections sent the blood sugar levels of both veterans crashing to fatally low levels.

Family members interviewed by investigators say they were told a person of interest, who has since been removed from patient care, may have been responsible for the deaths of as many as 10 patients on Unit 3A by insulin injection.

The person has not been charged. A hospital spokesman said the person was removed from patient contact. 

Marks said he is not familiar with the specifics of the West Virginia cases, but notedinvestigators face an enormous challenge building a case solely on forensic evidence.

“It (insulin) disappears quite rapidly once somebody dies,” he said. “I am very skeptical about this idea of exhuming bodies and finding insulin.”

‘They want it swept under the carpet’

Cases of health care workers poisoning patients with insulin are rare. Most nurses convicted of mass murder carried out their killings in the 1990s and 2000s, Yardley found, and many exhibited “red flag” behaviors.

The killer nurses had higher death rates on their shift, struggled with mental instability or depression and made colleagues feel anxious. They also were more likely to volunteer for the night shift and move from hospital to hospital.

Frequently changing jobs might be a sign that the nurses left jobs when their actions became suspicious, she noted.

“It could be the case that they have killed before and it hadn’t been detected,” Yardley said. “Very often, hospitals want to be very careful with their public relations. They don’t want patients to know there had been some type of issue like this. They want it swept under the carpet.”

Harvey, the Cincinnati orderly and nursing assistant, had been on his third hospital job when he was arrested and charged in 1987. His health care career included stints at a London, Kentucky hospital, the Cincinnati VA Medical Center and finally Drake Hospital in Cincinnati.

A man named John Powell crashed his motorcycle and soon found himself on Harvey’s floor. Powell’s injuries were not life threatening until Harvey put cyanide and water in a feeding tube.

Like all motorcycle crash victims in Ohio, Powell was autopsied — and a deputy coroner happened to have a genetic ability to smell cyanide. 

‘It was pure luck,” Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said.

Harvey confessed and pleaded guilty to killing 37 people at the three hospitals using cyanide, arsenic, insulin and other substances. In media interviews, he admitted to killing even more patients. 

“He initially claimed it was a mercy killing,” said Deters.  But a psychiatrist concluded, “he liked to kill people. This is not a mercy killing. He has a compulsion to kill.”

Harvey died in 2017 after a beating by another inmate at an Ohio state prison.

Deters said investigators learned Harvey was fired from the VA for storing organ samples in his locker, but Drake Hospital never checked his work history. After the murders were uncovered, the administrator changed his application to make it appear the hospital had checked with past employers. The hospital administrator was charged and convicted for doctoring the application.

Graeber’s research on Cullen showed a similar pattern. Hospitals where he worked often delayed reporting sentinel events that should have triggered an investigation by state health department inspectors.

“There is always going to be one bad guy out there in any field,” Graeber said. “You have institutions that are supposed to safeguard their people and not prioritize limiting liability.”

In Clarksburg, veterans and family members want answers about the suspicious deaths at Louis A. Johnson VA Medical Center. They’ve questioned the hospital’s oversight. They’ve grown frustrated with the pace of the investigation.

Debbie Cutler is the daughter of a Korean War veteran John Hallman, 87, who died in June 2018 after a night at the Clarksburg VA hospital. Federal agents told the family he died under suspicious circumstances with his blood sugar plummeting.  His death has not been classified as homicide.

“There hasn’t been any arrest – that’s what we’re still waiting for,” Cutler said. “They are working on having a rock-solid case against this person. That is what they tell us every time we talk to them. We will have to be patient and wait.”

Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/health/2019/10/18/clarksburg-west-virginia-veterans-affairs-deaths-medical-murders/3936045002/

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Lady Gaga falls off Las Vegas concert stage

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_5992005922001_5992004633001-vs Lady Gaga falls off Las Vegas concert stage fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/las-vegas fox-news/person/lady-gaga fox-news/entertainment/music fox news fnc/entertainment fnc Dom Calicchio article 66961d53-82a0-58bc-9b61-4b7407d609fb

Lady Gaga startled her fans in Las Vegas on Thursday night by taking a tumble off the stage during her performance, according to videos posted on social media.

The “Pokerface” singer was seen in videos in the arms of a fan who she had invited onstage.

LADY GAGA ASKED ABOUT ‘FORTNITE’ AND FANS ANSWERED

Suddenly, the fan and Gaga slip off the edge of the stage, with Gaga landing on her back and the fan on top of her. Fans seated nearby rush to help them.

“We legitimately thought she was dead,” a fan posted on Reddit, according to the BBC.

According to social media posts, the star was soon back at her piano, performing another song – and seemingly not seriously hurt.

Gaga has had her share of physical issues over the years.

In 2017 she announced she was suffering from fibromyalgia, a chronic pain condition that prompted her to cancel a leg of her concert tour.

In 2013, Gaga suffered a hip fracture that required her to get a replacement joint, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The star’s current Las Vegas residency is scheduled to continue through May 16, according to the MGM Resorts website.

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There was no immediate word on whether Gaga planned to cancel any shows because of Thursday’s tumble.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_5992005922001_5992004633001-vs Lady Gaga falls off Las Vegas concert stage fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/las-vegas fox-news/person/lady-gaga fox-news/entertainment/music fox news fnc/entertainment fnc Dom Calicchio article 66961d53-82a0-58bc-9b61-4b7407d609fb   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_5992005922001_5992004633001-vs Lady Gaga falls off Las Vegas concert stage fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/las-vegas fox-news/person/lady-gaga fox-news/entertainment/music fox news fnc/entertainment fnc Dom Calicchio article 66961d53-82a0-58bc-9b61-4b7407d609fb

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