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Fla. State Mental Hospital Nurse Charged With Neglect

Florida State Mental Hospital in Chattahoochee, Fla

A nurse at the Florida State Mental Hospital in Chattahoochee could be facing jail time after a pregnant patient lost her child. Nurse Kathryn Cottle is being charged with a felony after she allegedly neglected the patient’s calls for help.

In December, a mentally ill woman was airlifted to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital, where she gave birth to a brain-dead baby who died months later. Kathryn Cottle was fired shortly after hospital officials determined she did not appropriately care for the woman. The former Florida State Mental Hospital nurse is now being charged with neglect of a disabled adult, which is a third-degree felony. Department of Children and Families spokesman Joe Follick said her actions were inexcusable.

“You know, her actions in this particular incident do not meet the expectations, not only that this department has, but that the people of Florida expect,” Follick said.

Cottle has twice appealed her termination, but both attempts were rejected. If convicted of negligence, she could face up to five years in prison and a five-thousand dollar fine.