Nurse Charged With Manslaughter For Taking Woman Off Life Support Without Consent

A 50-year-old nurse from Ontario, Canada, has been charged with manslaughter and criminal negligence causing death after taking a 39-year-old mother-of-two off of life support without consent.

The woman’s husband says his wife, Deanna Leblanc, was recovering from a “minor knee surgery” when she became ill and was taken to the hospital. Upon admittance, LeBlanc was placed on life support until nurse Joanna Flynn removed her from the machine without consent. LeBlanc died shortly after being removed from the life support machines.

According to the Toronto Star, 39-year-old Deanna LeBlanc underwent a minor knee surgery and was recovering at home on March 2, 2014, when all of a sudden she felt ill. Husband Michael Leblanc says that Deanna woke up abruptly in the middle of the night saying she felt like she was going to die. Michael took her to Georgian Bay General Hospital where they placed her on life support.

Michael says that Deanna was fine prior to the knee surgery and that he has no idea what went wrong. However, he has now learned that a nurse providing care for Deanna may be to blame for her premature death. The Daily Mail reports that after an internal investigation into Deanna’s death by the hospital and police, it was discovered that nurse Joanna Flynn had removed the mother-of-two from life support without consent.

As a result of the findings, Flynn was arrested and charged with manslaughter and criminal negligence causing death. The hospital has released a brief statement on the incident noting that “someone in the hospital” was charged criminally in a patient’s death and that the incident is “highly distressing.”

“A criminal charge involving someone at our hospital is a highly distressing occurrence and will create a good deal of anxiety for our community.”

The police have yet to release any additional information about the case, noting that the investigation is ongoing and that they had been advised by lawyers not to release any additional details at this time. However, Michael says that his wife’s death “never should have happened” and that he wants answers as she was well aside from a “bum knee.”

“It just wasn’t right. Thirty-nine years old and nothing wrong with her but a bum knee. This should never have happened.”

Deanna left behind two sons, age 15 and 18, after he untimely death. Now her husband is trying to pick up the pieces and understand why nurse Joanna Flynn removed his wife from life support without consent.

[Image Credit: Getty Images/ Ian Waldie]