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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A nurse is facing involuntary manslaughter and neglect charges following the death of H.R. McMaster Sr., the father of President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser. McMaster Sr. died at Cathedral Village, a senior care facility in Philadelphia.
Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro says the father of H.R. McMaster died in “plain sight” in the facility’s lobby as he announced Christann Gainey, a contracted nurse working at Cathedral Village in Andorra, failed to properly care for the 84-year-old.
“Gainey could have saved Mr. McMaster’s life if she simply had done her job,” said Shapiro.
McMaster Sr. was placed at the facility following a stroke. He was labeled “high risk” for falling.
Court records show workers discovered McMaster lying on the floor of his room on the night of April 12. He had a cut on his head and some blood was visibile.
He was loaded into a wheelchair and wheeled to the lobby. Shapiro says Gainey failed to check on McMaster Sr. for hours.
“All told, Gainey failed to administer eight neurological assessments required under Cathedral Village fall protocol,” said Shapiro.
The retired lieutenant died seven-and-a-half hours after he fell. Prosecutors say that records show that was news to Gainey. Knowing he was dead, officials say Gainey still falsified another assessment 20 minutes after his death.
“What the family wants to know is why it happened,” said Marty Kardon, a lawyer for McMaster’s estate.
Kardon has initiated the first step of litigation against the facility.
“When you have a temporary employee, half their day or shift is spent figuring out who the people are and what they’re supposed to do, and what the policies are and they can’t provide eight full hours of care,” said Kardon. “So, that’s its own form of understaffing.”
Cathedral Village says it has been working with law enforcement in the investigation.
“As part of Cathedral Village’s cooperation with the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, we were notified of the arrest of a nurse employed by an outside staffing agency on charges related to the April 13th death of 84-year-old resident H.R. McMaster Sr. We had previously removed this nurse, who was not a Cathedral Village employee, from our community immediately following Mr. McMaster’s passing. We have been working closely with law enforcement since that time, and will continue to cooperate with the Attorney General’s prosecution of the non-employee nurse arrested today,” the facility said in a statement.
If convicted, Gainey faces 10 to 20 years in prison on the most serious charges.