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Care providers protest police violence in hospitals after Harbor-UCLA shooting

L.A. County Sheriff's deputies gathered outside Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.
L.A. County sheriff’s deputies meet outside Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, where multiple investigations are underway into a patient who was shot by a deputy last week. (KTLA-TV)

A group of care providers and activists gathered outside Harbor-UCLA Medical Center on Tuesday evening to protest police violence in hospitals after a patient was shot there last week by a Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy.

“Hospitals are a place where we should be getting care,” said Mark-Anthony Clayton-Johnson, founder of the Frontline Wellness Network, a coalition of care providers working to end mass incarceration. “In that context, there should never be a reason why a law enforcement officer should use lethal force, such as a gun, on our folks.”

Clayton-Johnson, who does not work at the hospital but was scheduled to speak at Tuesday’s event, added: “Sheriffs shouldn’t have any place responding to crises in our hospitals when trained providers are better equipped to save lives.”

Dr. Anish Mahajan, chief medical officer for the hospital, said in a statement Tuesday that the patient was experiencing a psychiatric crisis on Oct. 6 when he was shot by a deputy assigned to South L.A. station who was not a member of the sheriff’s unit at Harbor-UCLA. The patient, a man 30 to 40 years-old, has not been identified.

The deputy “was on-site to provide security services for another hospitalized patient who was in an adjacent room,” Mahajan said. “Multiple investigations are underway within and outside the hospital about how and why this incident occurred.”

Meanwhile , he said, hospital leaders “will review best practices on how to provide security services that optimally protect the health and safety of patients, visitors, and staff.”

Sheriff’s Lt. Derrick Alfred said last week that the patient was using a metal device to break the window of the room where two Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies were with another patient. One of the deputies then shot him.

Alfred said the device was “about the size of a shoebox but metal — all metal.”

In a news release, the Sheriff’s Department said that the patient “turned his attention on the deputy” before he was shot.

Some speakers at Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting called for the removal of law enforcement from hospitals. Last week’s shooting at Harbor-UCLA was the second there in five years.

Sheriff Alex Villanueva responded: “It was a scene out of ‘The Shining’ with Jack Nicholson,” he said of the shooting. “We’re gonna give all the details tomorrow so you can make a decision for yourself on the wisdom of having law enforcement in hospitals.”

Times staff writer Faith E. Pinho contributed to this report.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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Nurse who spoke at RNC arrested for shooting woman in the stomach

Amy Ford claims she shot the woman in self-defense

Amy Ford, a West Virginia nurse who spoke at this year’s Republican National Convention, was arrested on Saturday after shooting a woman in the stomach in her hometown.

Ford, 39, who was identified as Amy Thorn in the court filing, was charged with malicious or unlawful assault after shooting a woman in her abdomen in Williamson, West Virginia. The victim has been identified by WSAZ -TV as Jonda Whitt.

Ford also goes by Amy Johnson, the local news outlet reports.

Amy Ford speaks at the Republican National Convention in August 2020. (via screenshot)
Amy Ford speaks at the Republican National Convention in August 2020. (via screenshot)

While details of the incident remain unknown, Mingo County Police Chief Grady Dotson stated that Ford claims she acted in self-defense, according to WCHS-TV. Whitt is being treated at a local hospital and her injuries are not life-threatening.

READ MORE: Candace Owens team paid for attendees to travel to White House event

Ford posted bond and has been released from custody.

Ford first caught the public’s eye when she volunteered to treat COVID-19 patients at a New York City hospital in the early months of the coronavirus crisis in the United States. WCHS-TV reported that the Mingo County mother of three traveled there to work in overstretched hospitals when the state was the epicenter of the outbreak.

With little cases in West Virginia at the time, Ford said treating COVID-19 patients in New York gave her a fuller understanding of how bad the pandemic was getting, stating “once I was able to come [to New York] and see it for myself, at this point in time, that’s the only way we’re going to slow it down so we can get ahead of it.”

She was invited to speak at the 2020 RNC in August, where she spoke of her story and praised President Donald Trump for his administration’s response to COVID-19.

READ MORE: RNC chairwoman Ronna McDaniel tests positive for COVID-19

“President Trump recognized the threat this virus presented for all Americans early on, and made rapid policy changes,” Ford, referring to the expansion of telehealth services, said in her nearly three-minute speech. “As a health-care professional I can tell you without hesitation: Donald Trump’s quick action and leadership saved thousands of lives during COVID-19, and the benefits of that response extend far beyond coronavirus.”

Ford’s comments about Trump’s response came weeks before the Washington Post reported that an audiotape from interviews that veteran journalist Bob Woodward conducted with Trump revealed that the president intentionally downplayed the seriousness of the virus.

“I wanted to always play it down,” Trump told Woodward back in March.

“I still like playing it down, because I don’t want to create a panic.”

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The post Nurse who spoke at RNC arrested for shooting woman in the stomach appeared first on TheGrio.

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Pearl Harbor shooting probe finds mental health care flaws

The Navy says its investigation into a shooting at Pearl Harbor last December was unable to determine what caused a submarine sailor to kill two civilian workers before fatally shooting himself

HONOLULU — The Navy said Tuesday its investigation into a shooting at Pearl Harbor last December was unable to determine what caused a submarine sailor to fire his service weapon at three civilian workers, killing two and wounding one, before he fatally shot himself.

But the Navy’s investigative report said 22-year-old Gabriel Romero had “several stressors” in his life in the months leading up to the shooting that together “likely led him to choose violence.”

Further, the report said the U.S. Pacific Fleet submarine force’s mental health program failed to properly diagnose Romero’s mental health condition during eight visits he made to a clinic between September and November 2019.

Still, U.S. Pacific Fleet Commander Adm. John Aquilino said no one could have predicted Romero would “engage in this ultimate act of murder and suicide” even if his mental health issues and his grievances had been known.

“This lack of predictability on mass shooting incidences, despite information that often does emerge after the fact as ‘warning signs’ has confounded experts across the globe,” Aquilino said in a memo forwarding the report to the vice chief of naval operations.

Romero was assigned to the USS Columbia submarine, which was in dry dock at the Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard at the time of the Dec. 4 shooting. His job was to stand watch and provide security for the submarine.

He used his service-issued M-4 rifle to shoot the civilians and a service-issued M-9 rifle to shoot himself immediately afterward. The shooting — which killed Roldan Agustin, 49, and Vincent Kapoi Jr., 30, and wounded Roger Nakamine, 36 — lasted a few seconds.

Romero completed annual arms screening in September 2019. But he was not re-screened even though the Navy was aware of multiple “risk factors” including: two single motor vehicle accidents within a year, general isolation from his shipmates, repeated counseling, a disciplinary review board, a failure to be promoted and an executive officer inquiry the day before the shooting.

The report singled out shortcomings by the submarine force’s mental health program, which diagnosed Romero with “phase of life problems.” Romero met with a licensed provider at the program’s Pearl Harbor clinic once. But his remaining seven visits were with a behavioral health technician who was an unlicensed enlisted sailor.

Staff shortages contributed to a lack of proper oversight of the unlicensed technician, the report said.

A forensic psychiatrist who reviewed Romero’s case for the investigation said Romero showed signs of an undiagnosed mental disorder.

The psychiatrist said the most probable diagnoses for Romero, in order of likelihood, were as follows: autistic spectrum disorder, attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, social anxiety disorder, personality disorder, anxiety disorder, depressive disorder and