Canadian nurse Elizabeth Wettlaufer, charged with murder for allegedly killing eight elderly nursing home patients, allegedly sent text messages to an acquaintance bragging about having killed them, The London Free Press is reporting.
“I am responsible for the deaths of eight people.”
Wettlaufer, 49, was “under a peace bond” (roughly equivalent to being out on bail or bond) two weeks ago when an acquaintance started getting strange texts from the former nurse. The acquaintance, who has asked that her identity be kept a secret, said she knew that Wettlaufer had struggled with mental illness and addiction, but she never thought she was capable of murder.
“I didn’t believe her for a minute.”
— CBC News (@CBCNews) October 26, 2016
Between 2007-2014, eight elderly patients at two southwestern Ontario nursing homes died while under Wettlaufer’s care. Seven of the patients died in one facility: Caressant Care, in Woodstock, Ontario. An eighth victim died at Meadow Park in London, Ontario. All eight victims were between 75 and 96 years old, according to City News.
On September 29, 2016, Ontario police, as well as investigators from other jurisdictions, began investigating the deaths. All eight patients were suspected to have died from a lethal dose of drugs, according to Cosmopolitan, but that suspicion remains unconfirmed.
One thing all of the victims had in common, however, was that they were under Wettlaufer’s care when they died.
— CBC Toronto (@CBCToronto) October 25, 2016
Neighbors believe that Wettlaufer, on learning of the investigation, suspected the police were honing in on her. The day after the investigation launched, she quit her job and surrendered her nursing license. She gave away her “beloved” dog, which shocked neighbors, who claim that the nurse routinely doted on the animal.
Neighbor Derek Gilbert never suspected that his neighbor was a suspected serial killer. He described her as a pleasant woman who lived alone, just her and her dog.
“We would chat and have laughs. She seemed like an everyday, normal kind of person.”
Beneath the surface, however, were signs that Elizabeth Wettlaufer was a deeply disturbed person. Friends and close family members knew that she had struggles with alcohol and mental illness, but few, if any, suspected she could be a serial killer. However, it appears that she may have written poetry, from the perspective of a serial killer.
Using the screen name “Betty Weston,” a user of the website Allpoetry.com, believed to be Wettlaufer, wrote some disturbing poetry. One poem, entitled “Inevitable,” describes a serial killer’s pleasure in stabbing a victim.
“Heart beats then sprays / as this next victim pays / her deft dagger’s bill.”
Another, entitled “Working Happy,” appears to describe working with the elderly.
“See I work with old people… I love the finality, the resignation, the knowing this is their last home.”
On October 25, Wettlaufer was arrested and charged with eight counts of murder. It was while she was free on bond that she allegedly used a cell phone to confess her crimes to an old acquaintance.
Back in Woostock, police chief William Renton promised that the city of 37,000 people would move on from possibly being the scene of a horrific mass murder.
“It’s very difficult for a community to have to endure these types of tragic incidents but the community is strong and the community will rally and work together to get through it again, just as we have in other major incidents.”
If convicted on all eight counts, Elizabeth Wettlaufer would be one of the worst mass murders in Canadian history. She is scheduled to appear in court on November 2.
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