A nurse has been accused of stealing and using a dying coronavirus patient’s credit card as he spent his final days in hospital.
Danielle Conti, 43, a nurse at Staten Island University Hospital North in New York, has been accused of stealing a credit card belonging to Anthony Catapano and using it twice.
Mr Catapano’s daughter Tara, 37, has made the claim that her dad’s card was used to buy petrol and groceries worth a total of $60 (£49).
On April 4, the 70-year-old was rushed to hospital after he had fallen ill with COVID-19. Yet when her dad left, Tara has insisted he was alert at the time of the theft, as CNN reported.
Eight days later, he passed away.
Since Tara’s mum Nancy had passed away in 2014, she had been paying her dad’s bill but said that she didn’t track his spends too closely.
However, the grieving daughter said that when she saw the credit card statement for petrol, which her dad would always pay for in cash, she knew something was wrong. Especially as she realised the petrol had been purchased on April 9, whilst her dad was fighting for his life. Tara decided she had no option but to alert the police.
She said: “Obviously, I knew it had to be a hospital employee because visitors weren’t really allowed.”
According to Ms Catapano, she was shown CCTV footage by the police which was taken from a grocery store. The footage showed a woman, who appeared to be Conti, paying for goods with her dad’s credit card.
Since discovering the shocking footage, Conti has been charged with grand larceny, petty larceny and criminal possession of stolen property.
Tara said: “I would want to know why she took advantage of my father while he was on his deathbed.”
She added: “I would want to know how she would feel if someone did that to a loved one of hers – whether it was a parent or grandparent. I don’t think when people do these things they think of it like that.”
Tara has stated she was appalled, as she couldn’t believe someone who was meant to be caring for dad could do such a thing.
It was later discovered that his spectacles, cell phone, cash in his wallet, phone chargers and pictures had gone missing too.
However, it’s not been made clear as of yet as to what actually happened to them, or if they were even stolen at all.
Director of public affairs for Staten Island University Hospital, Christian Preston, told CNN that Conti, who has been working at the hospital since 2007, has been suspended and faces being dismissed following the police charges against her.
He then added that the hospital is working closely with the police and have even launched their own investigation into the troubling case.
Conti is due to appear in September at Staten Island Criminal Court.