Footage from a hidden camera reveals the horrifying way a World War II veteran was treated as he died in a nursing home in 2014.
The family of 89-year-old James Dempsey of Woodstock, Georgia began secretly recording how he was treated at Northeast Atlanta Health and Rehabilitation Center. After television station 11 Alive persuaded courts to unseal the video, two nurses, including former nursing supervisor Wanda Nuckles, lost their licenses. WXIA-TV reports that the home fought for three years to keep the video secret.
In the disturbing footage, Dempsey calls repeatedly for help, stating he can't breathe. By the time nurses arrive, he is unresponsive. They do not perform any life-saving measures even though they claimed to before they knew they were being secretly recorded. The video also shows the nurses laughing while trying to start the oxygen machine.
Dempsey's family declined to comment, citing a settlement with the nursing home. They sued the center in 2014, CBS News reports. Dempsey's online obituary reveals that he was in the Georgia Army National Guard.
The nursing home operators wrote a statement which read that they were “saddened by the events, which occurred more than three years ago.” It went on to say it has “new leadership and the leadership team and the staff have worked very diligently to improve quality care and the quality of life for our residents….The facility recently was deficiency-free during our recent annual inspection conducted by the Georgia Department of Health on May 25, 2017.”