Former Lufkin serial killer nurse case revisited 10 years later

Photo: KTRE
Photo: KTRE
Photo: KTRE
Photo: KTRE

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - A former Lufkin dialysis nurse was convicted of killing patients by injecting bleach into their bloodstreams back in 2012. There is a similar tragedy unfolding in Tyler where Tyler Police Department has said a former nurse, William George Davis, is accused of tampering with multiple patients' arterial lines while working as a nurse at a Tyler hospital.

The Lufkin case followed four years of preparation for a month-long trial with extensive evidence presented to a jury at the Angelina County Courthouse.

Layne Thompson prosecuted the capital murder case of Kim Saenz. He's quick to note the case's complexity.

"The difficulty in cases like Kim Saenz is that you've got to prove causation. In other words, we alleged that she killed five people and a lot of the evidence on those deaths was circumstantial," Thompson said.

Thompson was brought the case in 2011 and helped prosecute with his background in medical law. He said in this case, every element had to be proven.

Author of the book Killer Nurse, John Foxjohn said the fear loomed for years with the possibility of someone duplicating the tragic crime.

"One of the big things that prosecutor and everybody involved in this case has always feared is that somebody would try to copy this," Foxjohn said.

Foxjohn said the Saenz case was unique and never done before. That's what made it so difficult to try and convict a medical professional.

The author said authorities have the ability to use resources from those experts in Lufkin in
a case such as the one unfolding in Tyler involving a nurse accused of purposely introducing air into patient's arterial lines.

"Fortunately for Tyler and them, they have somebody to fall back on. Somebody they can ask. But make no mistake, convicting him is going to be a really, really tough job," Foxjohn said.

Thompson believes, w
hile he doesn't know much about the Davis case, most likely prosecutors in Tyler will have to prove that the acts were intentional.

"With air in somebody's system, that may make it more challenging for prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt that it's not negligence but rather in fact intentional conduct in part of the defendant," Thompson said.

Saenz was sentenced to life in prison without parole. She was also handed three 20-year sentences on multiple counts of aggravated assault.

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