A Lebanon woman working as a home healthcare nurse faces a second-degree involuntary manslaughter charge following the death of a baby in July.
According to a probable cause statement submitted to the county prosecutor by an investigating Texas County Sheriff’s Department deputy, Devin J. Wiekhorst, 40, of 17475 Tulsa Drive in Lebanon, allegedly administered an excessive dose of morphine to the child (less than 1 year of age), causing its death in July 26 at Plato. The report said Wiekhorst is LPN with Phoenix Home Health Care, and had been assigned to care for the child at a Highway 17 residence along with an RN with Hospice Compassus.
The officer said the RN provided training to Wiekhorst and the child’s grandmother with regard to dosage amounts, and what was reportedly a correct dose was administered while all three were present. But when the RN left the room to do paperwork, Wiekhorst allegedly told the grandmother the dose had been too small and she needed to make up the difference.
Believing Wiekhorst knew what she was talking about, the grandmother agreed and more morphine was given to the child who died while Wiekhorst was at lunch. Wiekhorst reportedly called the RN for dosage clarification and was advised the total given to the child was equal to an adult dose.
During interviews with authorities, Wiekhorst at first denied giving the second dose, but later admitted to it. Charges were filed Sept. 13, and Wiekhorst was arrested and booked into the Texas County Jail last Thursday (Nov. 10). She is held on $250,000 bond.