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Brown County Nurse Convicted of Abuse and Neglect of a Patient


GREEN BAY — Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced today that a Brown County woman has been convicted of abuse and neglect of a patient. On October 29, 2010, Luann Rusch, 51, 1208 Hastings Street, Green Bay, pleaded no contest to one misdemeanor count of Physical Abuse of an Individual at Risk and one misdemeanor count of Neglect of a Patient. A sentence of six months was imposed and stayed and Rusch was ordered to pay court costs, perform 50 hours of community service, and was ordered by the court to fully comply with the terms and conditions of her license suspension issued by the Department of Regulations and Licensing.


According to the Wisconsin Department of Justice's criminal complaint, Rusch was a registered nurse employed at Parkview Manor, an inpatient healthcare facility in Green Bay. In November 2008, Rusch was taken from the facility to Aurora Hospital due to a drug overdose. It was discovered at that time that a Fentanyl Patch was missing from Rusch's medication cart. Rusch was terminated from employment at Parkview Manor in June 2009 for performance issues.


On July 10, 2009, Rusch returned to the facility and went to the room of a former patient where she stayed for only a few minutes before leaving the facility. Personnel on duty immediately went to the patient's room and discovered the Fentanyl patch the patient had been wearing had been removed. During the Wisconsin Department of Justice's investigation, Rusch admitted to having gone to the facility specifically because she knew this patient wore a Fentanyl patch and that she had removed the patch from the patient for her own personal use.


The case was prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Frank Remington.