JUNEAU — A nurse accused of taking narcotic drugs that were meant to go to residents in a Watertown nursing home has been scheduled for a plea and sentencing hearing.
Melanie J. Hunter, 39, Watertown, is charged with intentionally abusing residents-causing bodily harm. She could face up to six years in prison and a $10,000 fine if convicted of the charge.
According to the criminal complaint, Hunter was employed at the Watertown nursing home when the owner became suspicious that Hunter was taking narcotic prescription drugs from the health center while she worked. A registered nurse became suspicious while working with Hunter.
Watertown Police were called March 17, 2019, about the suspicions after Hunter was found in the medication room with hydromorphone, a Schedule II narcotic. The medicine was prescribed to a resident who said that she never asked for the narcotic. According to the criminal complaint, Hunter had indicated in paperwork that she had given the medication to the resident.
In addition, residents told authorities that Hunter had at times given them the wrong pill when they did ask for their prescription medicine. According to the criminal complaint, Hunter had told staff at the nursing home that she had stolen one to two pills a night from residents or about 10 pills per week for about seven months. She allegedly admitted to using Claritin to replace the Oxycodone pills.