Florida nursing home deaths ruled homicide

Published: Nov. 23, 2017 at 10:33 AM

Stephen Feller

Nov. 23 (UPI) -- The deaths of 12 nursing home residents in Hollywood, Fla., following Hurricane Irma have been ruled a homicide by police, though police say they have not yet determined if anybody will be charged.

The Hollywood Police Department is now investigating the deaths at The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills as homicides following results released by the medical examiner on Wednesday, two months after Hurricane Irma slammed South Florida and knocked out electricity in much of the region.

The announcement is the latest development since residents of of the home were evacuated on Sept. 13 after eight patients died following the loss of power there.

Six more patients died in the weeks after the storm amid a growing controversy, bringing the total number of deaths to 14. Police said, however, that two of the deaths were not caused by the loss of power.

While several wrongful death lawsuits have been filed already, officials said it is too early in the investigation to know whether charges will be filed against employees of the nursing home.

"[Investigators have] a tremendous amount of evidence to pour through, so at this point we can't say when we'll have more information about charges or arrests," Miranda Grossman, public information officer for the Hollywood Police Department, told reporters.

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