Rick Scott Accused of Destroying Evidence In Nursing Home Deaths
Lawyers for two nursing home employees charged in the deaths of patients under their care following Hurricane Irma have accused former Florida Governor Rick Scott of destroying evidence that would prove their innocence, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
Sergo Colin and Jorge Carballo’s attorneys have asked “Broward Circuit Judge John Murphy to dismiss manslaughter charges against their clients, arguing that deleted voicemails to Scott would have proved that employees of the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills tried but failed to get help as conditions worsened after Hurricane Irma struck in 2017.”
Twelve residents of the nursing home died from heat-related ailments, the newspaper reported, after the building’s air conditioning system was knocked out by the storm. Eight of the patients died three days after the hurricane passed, and another four died in the following weeks.
“There was no culpable negligence on the part of these defendants concerning this unprecedented and catastrophic event for which Rick Scott and FPL failed to plan properly both before and after the event," the attorneys told the court. "Rick Scott and FPL failed to restore power despite multiple assurances it would be restored on a priority basis.”
Further, the attorneys said when the nursing home employees called the number Scott had given them prior to the hurricane, their messages were dismissed.
“They said there was nothing they could do,” said Colin’s attorney David Frankel. “That proves they received the messages.”
The Sentinel noted that Murphy rejected a different motion to dismiss earlier this month, “but ordered prosecutors to spell out specifically what the defendants should have done as the crisis was unfolding.”