JEFFERSON PARISH, La. — Update: The man suspected of attacking an ICU nurse last Thursday has been booked into the St. Bernard Parish jail. Details surrounding his arrest were not immediately available.
The Jefferson Parish Sheriffs' office has identified the man responsible for the attack of an ICU nurse last Thursday. Detectives are looking for 48-year-old Quincy Quinn. Witnesses and Crimestoppers tips were used to positively identify Quinn. A warrant was issued for charges of Battery of a Healthcare Worker.
Meanwhile, Ochsner Health is beefing up security at its hospitals across the system.
The traveling nurse from Houston, working in the Intensive Care Unit at the Ochsner Medical Center in Gretna was attacked by a man who was visiting a patient. It happened around 11, Thursday night.
The Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office released a picture of the suspect captured by security cameras inside the hospital. Deputies found the nurse injured and unconscious. Witnesses told investigators family members were arguing in the ICU after a relative died and at some point, the man struck and knocked out the nurse. The suspect left the hospital before security arrived.
Ochsner CEO Warner Thomas called the attack “unacceptable” and vowed to press charges against the assailant to the full extent of the law.
In a statement, Thomas said, “Workplace violence against healthcare workers has been escalating throughout the pandemic and has reached a point that legislation needs to be considered to make this violence a felony.”
Louisiana State Nurses Association (LSNA) President Ecoee Rooney says her organization is also pushing for harsher penalties for those who harm health care providers.
“We need to recognize under no circumstances, nor at any time should any healthcare provider take any abuse from any patient or their family,” Rooney said. “It’s not okay.”
Rooney said impacts from the pandemic have definitely made it a lot harder for nurses to be able to focus on their work.
“We need to contact our legislators. Let them know this is an issue that is important to us and that we expect to see the protections that we need and deserve, so that we can do the work that we need to do and feel safe about it.”
Ochsner is now providing counseling services for its employees.
CrimeStoppers has raised the reward for information that leads to a conviction to $12,500. That includes a $10,000 donation from Ochsner Health.
Here is Warner Thomas’s full statement:
“The morning of January 28, a nurse working in our ICU at Ochsner Medical Center - West Bank Campus was attacked by a member of a patient’s family. Ochsner security and local law enforcement responded immediately.
There is nothing more important to us than the safety and security of our employees and our patients. Workplace violence in any form – physical, verbal, non-verbal or emotional – is unacceptable, and we will not tolerate this behavior.
Workplace violence against healthcare workers has been escalating throughout the pandemic and has reached a point that legislation needs to be considered to make this violence a felony. This consideration under review by a Louisiana task force comes as U.S. hospitals grapple with an increase in disruptive or violent incidents in hospitals — many involving hostile visitors – adding further stress to the healthcare workplace.
We are working with the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office on a thorough investigation. We will press charges against the assailant to the full extent of the law. Any questions on the investigation or suspect should be directed to JPSO.
We would like to thank our employees who acted swiftly in a challenging and stressful situation and started emergency protocols. Ochsner has dispatched additional security officers and police detail across the health system, and we are focused on providing counseling services and additional support to our employees during this time.”
Anyone with information regarding the identity of this suspect is asked to call our Criminal Investigations Bureau at 504-364-5300 or contact Crimestoppers.