nurse desires solutions after attacker’s fees are downgraded

nurse desires solutions after attacker’s fees are downgraded

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – An ER nurse is talking out and asking questions, almost a yr after he was attacked in his emergency room. He’s indignant his attacker now solely faces a misdemeanor as an alternative of a felony cost, after an act handed two years in the past growing jail time and fines for assaults on well being care professionals.

“These legal guidelines are solely nearly as good because the folks within the energy to make it work,” stated Todd Mason, the ER Nurse.

On January 11, 2022, Todd Mason says a affected person attacked him within the ER. Courtroom paperwork present it was 19-year-old Zachary Griffin.

nurse desires solutions after attacker’s fees are downgraded
Zachary Griffin. Picture courtesy Oklahoma County Detention Middle.

“When he was sitting on the aspect of the mattress, he kicked some water, punched me within the face,” stated Mason. “I went to attempt to get him again within the mattress, slipped on the water, went down on all fours.”

That’s when, Todd stated, the punches actually began flying.

“As soon as within the face, a bunch of occasions on the again, head, neck,” he stated.

The assault left Todd with a busted lip and a fractured backbone.

“I didn’t must have surgical procedures, not knock on wooden, however went to bodily remedy for 2 months,” stated Mason. “Takes me slightly longer to get off the bed within the morning.”

As for Griffin, he confronted felony assault and battery fees.

In 2020, the Medical Care Supplier Safety Act handed in Oklahoma. It elevated the penalty for felony assaults on well being care professionals to incorporate extra jail time and a superb of as much as $1,000.

Nevertheless, court docket information now present the felony Griffin confronted is only a misdemeanor, with court docket prices and a $500 superb.

“How does that really feel?” requested Information 4. “Like I used to be getting punched once more,” stated Mason.

Todd’s Supervisor, Tesha Loven, stated the assault was the third to occur simply that week.

“We’ve had about ten assaults within the E.R. that we’ve reported this final yr,” stated Loven. “So my massive query is, have all of them been downgraded to misdemeanor or minor offenses with this $500 superb?”

Integris and the Oklahoma Nurses Affiliation informed Information 4 this can be a nationwide downside.

“Office violence towards staff is a rising concern throughout the nation and throughout industries. With the excessive feelings that encompass damage and sickness normally, well being care staff are more and more turning into victims of such assaults. Actually, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates 73% of all office violence incidents that lead to damage and time away from work – happen in a well being care setting. At INTEGRIS Well being, we take acts of aggression towards our caregivers very significantly. We offer intensive coaching on tips on how to deescalate conditions, publish indicators describing the results of such a violence and provide our full assist to impacted caregivers. We stay up for working in partnership with native legislators and judicial leaders to handle this escalating concern.” – Integris

Picture courtesy nameless viewer.

“It’s tragic each time a nurse experiences any type of violence within the line of responsibility.  Sadly, nurses and different well being care staff expertise greater charges of violence than different staff.  Actually, one in 4 nurses expertise office violence.  Violent acts have an effect on all concerned together with different sufferers who could not obtain the care they deserve.  

ONA has advocated to assist coverage to extend penalties for people who assault healthcare staff.  As well as, services have posted signage telling the general public that violence towards nurses and different well being care staff is not going to be tolerated. It’s our hope that assaults towards nurses and well being care staff stay a felony and never be downgraded.” – Oklahoma Nurses Affiliation.

Todd nonetheless loves his job, however desires extra accountability.

“We’re there to assist not battle,” stated Mason.

Information 4 reached out to the Oklahoma County District Legal professional’s workplace a number of occasions over two days, however didn’t hear again.

Information 4 additionally referred to as the suspect’s legal professional twice however we didn’t hear again.