A decorated World War II veteran spent the last moments of his life begging for help as his nurses delayed treatment and even laughed at him. Unbeknownst to the nurses, their treatment of James Dempsey was all caught on video.
The Navy veteran was nervous about his stay at Northeast Atlanta Health and Rehabilitation, so his family installed a surveillance camera. Dempsey was aware of the camera, but the staff was not. This alarming video was the focal point of a lawsuit the family filed against the nursing home and it will hopefully shine a light on how our veterans do not get the care they deserve.
Dempsey’s family filed a lawsuit against the nursing home. During her deposition, nursing supervisor Wanda Nuckles stated that CPR was being performed on Dempsey when she entered the room. Nuckles claimed she took over chest compressions and continued until paramedics arrived. Dempsey, who called herself “the queen of resident’s rights” while under oath was rather detailed in her descriptions of what happened as Dempsey died.
The nursing supervisor’s testimony completely crumbled when she was then presented with the hidden video that showed the true tale. The expression suddenly changed as she was exposed as both a liar and someone who mocked a dying veteran.
On the last day of his life, Dempsey pressed his call button and said, “Help me, help me, help me!” It took eight minutes before staff entered the room and simply repositioned him. Dempsey actually called for help six times before going unconscious. When Nuckles entered the room, nobody was performing CPR as she testified. When Nuckles did attempt to perform CPR, she only did about a half dozen compressions before stopping. It took staff almost an hour to call 911.
As the nurses tried to get Mr. Dempsey’s oxygen tank to work, the self-proclaimed “queen of resident’s rights” begins laughing. Apparently, neglecting this dying man wasn’t enough. Nuckles felt the need to mock him as well and then lie about it all under oath.
It took the nursing home 10 months after learning of the video to fire the staff involved. Nuckles and the other nursing staff involved in the veteran’s care as he died, or lack thereof, ended up losing their nursing license after the Georgia Board of Nursing was sent the video.
Nuckles’ deposition and the hidden video that revealed the truth about Dempsey’s death is below.
The lack of care is appalling. This man’s final moments were spent begging for help from staff who were being paid to care for him. Even worse, he was mocked and the staff lied to cover up their abhorrent treatment of this man who fought to defend our nation.
Dempsey’s family settled with the nursing home. It boasts the lowest rating from Medicare of one star. The facility has been fined $813,113 since 2015, but Northeast Atlanta Health and Rehabilitation remains open today.