In the family, in the supermarket or even at the doctor's? If your own rapid corona test is positive, many infected people do not know exactly where they got infected. In the case of an outbreak in a nursing home in Hildesheim with three deaths at the end of 2021, the public prosecutor is convinced that an employee is said to have started the chain of infection.
The 46-year-old is now before the district court of Hildesheim. She is accused of negligent homicide, negligent bodily harm and forgery of documents. The woman is said to have faked a double vaccination against Covid-19 by presenting a fake vaccination card. At the end of November 2021, she is said to have been infected with Corona herself and infected a colleague during a coffee break in the home. A total of 5 employees and eleven residents became infected in the following days and weeks. Three women aged 80, 85 and 93 died.
According to the indictment, the forensic examinations showed that Covid-19 was the cause of death in the 80-year-old. In the case of the other two, other causes cannot be ruled out; in these cases, the 46-year-old is accused of negligent bodily harm. She was employed as an everyday companion, so she did not take on any nursing work.
Lawyer: Accused "had no contact with the deceased"
Defense attorney Velit Tümenci said his client would not provide any information on the matter. The lawyer presented a personal statement from the defendants. In it, the woman emphasizes that she is not a corona denier. "My client had no contact with the deceased," emphasized the defense attorney. "Unfortunately, death is an everyday companion in a retirement home."
His client is currently unemployed and in psychological treatment. The management of the home fired her without notice after she found out that her vaccination card was fake.
On the first day of the trial, the deputy director of the home, the director of the home and the colleague whom she is said to have infected were questioned as witnesses. Among other things, it was about the question of whether others could have introduced the virus, for example visitors. A negative rapid test was necessary for access to the home.
The director of the home estimated the number of visitors at around 150 within two weeks, the visits at the time of the outbreak were also documented, but the documents were destroyed as required for data protection reasons. The facility has a total of around 75 employees and around 120 residents.
Linked chain of infection suspected
The investigators had the PCR smears of the deceased residents, the suspects and their partner who had died of Covid-19 examined more closely. According to the public prosecutor's office in July, a connected chain of infection can be suspected. However, the accused's sample was accidentally destroyed in the laboratory.
After consultation with the deputy director of the home, the accused came to work on the last weekend of November 2021 despite her son’s corona infection. As she was not vaccinated, she should have been isolated at home, but the employer assumed she was vaccinated. That's why she was allowed to come with a negative rapid test. In addition, according to the witness, she had always worn an FFP2 mask. The accused is said to have worked unnoticed for three days, after which she reported sick.
On Friday of the same week, the colleague with whom she had had coffee the previous Monday noticed cold symptoms. He still went to work because he sometimes had a cold in the morning, said the witness, and his quick test in the morning was negative. Because his condition deteriorated, he canceled his shift.
When drinking coffee in the break before his infection, he kept his distance from the accused, said the 39-year-old in the courtroom. He later did not suspect that this colleague had infected him. "I had so many contacts with other people there. She was just one of many," said the everyday companion. He was deployed on the ward where the Corona outbreak occurred. When asked about the three dead, the witness said he could remember bringing breakfast to one of them in bed.
Supervisors made inquiries
The falsification of the defendant's vaccination card only came to light because she had called her superior in tears and reported that her partner had come to the hospital with Corona, that he was doing very badly and that she had to make the decision about life-prolonging measures. "I persuaded her that he was young and vaccinated," said the witness. After this conversation, she first suspected that the employee had not been vaccinated after all and she did some research. According to her defense attorney, the accused has now been vaccinated.
According to the court, a total of twelve witnesses and three experts are invited to the trial. On March 7th, among other things, the doctors of the deceased elderly women are to be heard. A total of five days of negotiations are scheduled. According to this plan, the verdict could be pronounced on March 21st.