Representation. A hospital patient. Engin_Akyurt/Pixabay


  • The nurse, 38, was charged with physical abuse of an elder person
  • She cut the victim's right foot off on May 27 after it had become necrotic
  • The nurse is scheduled to appear in court on Dec. 6

A Wisconsin nurse has been charged after allegedly amputating a dying patient's foot without permission and telling her co-workers that she would use it as a display in her family's taxidermy shop.

Mary K. Brown, a 38-year-old hospice nurse at the Spring Valley Health and Rehab Center in Spring Valley, was charged last week with physical abuse of an elder person, intentionally causing great bodily harm and mayhem, Fox News reported.

The unnamed 62-year-old male patient was admitted to the facility in March due to a fall at home and critically frostbitten feet, according to an affidavit obtained by The Washington Post.

Health officials believed the man was very close to dying by the end of May, WQOW reported.

Witnesses told authorities that despite the patient not asking for his foot to be cut off, Brown amputated the man's right foot on May 27 after it had become necrotic. Brown and several witnesses said no doctor gave Brown authorization to perform the amputation, according to WQOW.

The patient died on June 4, eight days after the operation.

The body was sent to the county medical examiner due to the "unusual circumstances" of the patient's death, according to the complaint. The medical examiner told investigators in June that the right foot was not attached to the man, which led to Brown being charged in connection with the patient's death.

Brown told police that she proceeded with the amputation to make the patient more comfortable, claiming that she would have wanted the same if she were in that position. She told investigators that she believed a doctor would deny her request, so she forged ahead without asking for permission.

Brown allegedly told her co-workers she planned to use the man's right foot as a display in her family's taxidermy shop and wanted to put a sign next to it that said, "Wear your boots, kids," according to the affidavit.

Another nurse who was in the room during the amputation said she was holding the patient's hand and noticed that his grip became tight while also moaning during the procedure.

Another nurse told Pierce County Sheriff's Office investigators that the patient said that he felt everything and that it hurt, according to the affidavit.

Kevin Larson, the administrator and CEO of Spring Valley Senior Living and Health Care, told WQOW that Brown is "not employed with our community."

"We have and will continue to fully cooperate with the investigation into this matter," he said.

Brown is due in court on Dec. 6 for an initial appearance.

An elderly person.
Representation. An elderly person holding a cane. Alexas_Fotos/Pixabay