KEY POINTS

  • The nurse was found guilty of capital murder
  • The victims were four patients recovering from heart surgery
  • Davis was fired in 2018 for falsifying care events

A nurse in Texas has been convicted Tuesday of murder after he killed multiple patients by injecting air into their arteries. 

William George Davis, a 37-year-old nurse from Hallsville, Texas, was found guilty of capital murder in the deaths of four patients between 2017 and 2018 while working as a nurse at the Christus Trinity Mother Frances Hospital in Tyler. 

The four victims, John Lafferty, Ronald Clark, Christopher Greenway and Joseph Kalina, had been recovering from heart surgery when they suffered stroke-like symptoms and died. 

CT scans of each of the four patients showed they had abnormal arterial spaces in their brains. During the trial, Dr. William Yarbrough, a Dallas-area pulmonologist and professor of internal medicine, said he ruled out blood pressure problems and any other causes of death besides the injection of air as the reason why the patients died following the surgery, according to the Associated Press

During the trial, which began Sept. 28 when Davis entered a not guilty plea, the prosecution also presented a security camera video that showed the defendant entering Kalina’s room in the morning of Jan. 25, 2018. 

The footage showed Davis walking out of Kalina’s room at 1:16 a.m. and heading down the hall where he looked at the monitors showing the conditions of the patients on the floor. Kalina’s health deteriorated moments afterward, but Davis continued watching from the hall as his fellow nurses try to help the patient, according to KSLA.

In their closing arguments, the prosecution noted that the hospital has not changed any of its procedures during Davis’ tenure. They also noted that the hospital has not reported any similar incidents since Davis was fired on Feb. 15, 2018, for falsifying care events. 

Davis’ nursing license was suspended in March 2018 through an order from the Texas Board of Nursing, according to Tyler Morning Telegraph.

The jury found Davis guilty after an hour of deliberation following nearly two weeks of witness testimony and evidence. The prosecution is seeking the death penalty in his case. 

The punishment phase is set to begin Wednesday morning. People convicted of capital murder face either life in prison or the death penalty.

Nurse Janete Da Silva Oliveira prepares a dose of Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine in the Nossa Senhora Livramento community on the banks of the Rio Negro, near Manaus, Amazonas state, Brazil February 09, 2021. Nurse Janete Da Silva Oliveira prepares a dose of Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine in the Nossa Senhora Livramento community on the banks of the Rio Negro, near Manaus, Amazonas state, Brazil February 09, 2021. Photo: AFP / MICHAEL DANTAS