Elizabeth Tracey Mae Wettlaufer of Woodstock, a 49-year-old registered nurse in Ontario is facing eight first degree murder charges in connection to the deaths of eight elderly people at nursing homes across southwestern Ontario.
Ontario Provincial Police said the deaths occurred at two nursing homes in Woodstock and London, Ont. between 2007 and 2014.
Police said seven of the deaths took place at Caressant Care Long Term Care Home in Woodstock and the other at Meadow Park in London.
A statement released on Monday by Caressant Care said the criminal probe targeted “the actions of a former staff member, a registered nurse” who left the facility two-and-a-half years ago.
We remain in regular contact with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care,” Caressant Care spokesperson Lee Griffi said. “Our highest priority is to continue to provide for the physical, social and spiritual needs of our residents, and that remains our focus. We deeply regret the additional grief and stress this is imposing on the families involved.”
Police identified the nurse as Elizabeth Tracey Mae Wettlaufer of Woodstock during a press conference Tuesday morning. She was charged with eight counts of first-degree murder.
Caressant Care is a privately run organization comprising 15 nursing homes across Ontario with just over 1,200 residents under its care.
Police said the investigation began in Woodstock on Sept. 29, then expanded to London, Oxford and Brant counties.
Police announced on Oct. 14 that a suspect had been identified and there was no further risk to public safety. They would not, however, speculate on whether there were more victims.