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New Orleans Doctor, Nurses Charged with Murder

A doctor and two nurses were arrested overnight in New Orleans, where they are charged with second-degree murder in connection with patient deaths at a city hospital. The deaths occurred in the chaotic days after Hurricane Katrina.

The arrests follow an investigation by Louisiana Attorney General Charles Foti into allegations of mercy killings at New Orleans Memorial Medical Center.

Dr. Anna Pou and nurses Cheri Landry and Lori Budo are accused of using a cocktail of sedatives and painkillers to kill four patients whose ages ranged from 62 to 91.

The deaths occurred after the hospital was cut off by floodwaters. At the time, it was uncertain whether the patients could be evacuated. But today, Louisiana Attorney General Charles Foti says the deaths were not mercy killings.

In describing the charges, Foti said the three "pretended that maybe they were God" in the cases of four people. But in all there were more than 30 deaths at Memorial Hospital at the same time.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Carrie Kahn is NPR's International Correspondent based in Mexico City, Mexico. She covers Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central America. Kahn's reports can be heard on NPR's award-winning news programs including All Things Considered, Morning Edition and Weekend Edition, and on NPR.org.