September 14, 2005
Cause of death: Medical Neglect
Last updated: over 3 years ago
On 9/14/05 at approximately 4:10 am Officer Valccia Askew attempted to awaken Offender Carolyn Wells, TDCJ #901196, to serve her a disciplinary report. Offender Wells was the single occupant of the cell, and she was observed as lying on her back on the bottom bed. Offender Wells was on special cell restriction due to disciplinary violations. Officer Askew summoned Officer Valerie Moody to her location, and they opened the door and entered the cell. They each tried arousing Offender Wells by calling her name, but she did not respond. Officers Askew and Moody called for Sergeant Woodie Batchelor to respond. Sergeant Batchelor could not find a pulse on Offender Wells, nor was she breathing. Sergeant Batchelor began CPR, and LVNs Leslie Grant and Linda Levardi arrived at the scene and attached an automatic emergency defibrillator to Offender Wells. EMS personnel arrived at the scene at approximately 4:28 am and placed a heart monitor on Offender Wells that disclosed no activity. CPR was suspended and Dr. Barry Phillips from Coryell Memorial Hospital was notified, and he pronounced Offender Wells deceased. I examined the body of Offender Wells that disclosed no signs of a traumatic death. The body was nude except for a T-Shirt. The investigation has disclosed that Offender Wells was instructed three times to put clothes on between 8:30 pm and 9:45 pm. Justice of the Peace Jimmy Wood performed an inquest and ordered an autopsy. Offender Wells medical records disclosed that on 9/12/05 at 9:03 am Registered Nurse Vivian Moore documented that she was contacted by security regarding Offender Wells vomiting, being lightheaded and sweating. Ms. Moore instructed security to have Offender Wells rest, provide clear liquids, increase fluids, provide a cool rag and see a nurse on the unit of assignment, and notify medical if conditions worsen. Ms. Moore documented that when she was contacted that Offender Wells made no complaint of chest pain. On 9/13/05 at 7:05 am, Registered Nursed Pamela Berryhill examined Offender Wells and documented that Offender Wells was not talkative and would not offer much information. Offender Wells told Ms. Berryhill that her medication was very strong. Ms. Berryhill documented that Offender Wells skin was warm and dry, lungs clear, pulse regular, heart sounds normal, and no lower extremity edema. Ms. Berryhill documented that she instructed Offender Wells to take her medication as ordered and drink water. Offender Wells medical records disclosed a history of hypertension and Cirrhosis.