A suspect has been charged in the death of former National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster’s father.
84-year-old H.R. McMaster, Sr. died on April 13 after falling and hitting his head at a retirement home. The nurse assigned to check on him, Christann Shyvin Gainey, failed to take care of him and monitor him after his fall.
Authorities say Gainey never checked McMaster after his fall and left him in a wheelchair for hours.
Gainey then falsified records to cover her tracks after McMaster’s condition worsened and he was hospitalized.
A nurse has been charged in the death of President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser’s father at a Philadelphia senior care facility.
Christann Shyvin Gainey, 30, was charged on Thursday with involuntary manslaughter, neglect and records tampering in the death of H.R. McMaster Sr.
McMaster died on April 13 after falling and hitting his head at the Cathedral Village retirement community.
The 84-year-old was left in a wheelchair in the lobby and died about eight hours after his fall.
The Pennsylvania attorney general’s office says surveillance video showed that Gainey failed to conduct a total of eight required neurological checks on McMaster after his fall.
Prosecutors say Gainey falsified documents to make it seem like she had and that neurological checks could have indicated the severity of his injuries and steps could have been taken to save his life.
Gainey is a contract employee at the facility and a licensed practical nurse.
‘When a family selects a senior living facility, they do not expect their loved one to be found dead in the lobby of a place that was supposed to be caring for him,’ Attorney General Josh Shapiro said.
‘This nurse ignored her job responsibilities, falsified paperwork, lied to her supervisors and neglected Mr McMaster, who died.’
McMaster, a retired US Army officer, was admitted to the facility on April 9 after suffering a stroke.
His medical file noted that he was at a high risk of falls.
Just three days after his admission, McMaster was found by staff on the floor of his room after suffering an unwitnessed fall at about 11.30pm.
Under the facility’s policy, frequent neurological assessments are required for patients who experience unwitnessed falls to identify changes to their cognitive state.
Staff discovered that he had died at about 7am, according to authorities. He was in his wheelchair in the lobby.
The assistant director of nursing was notified of McMaster’s death and requested the neurological assessment paperwork from Gainey, which she was responsible for performing.
When Gainey provided the paperwork to facility staff, it was apparent that the most recent check was reported at 7.20am – after McMaster’s time of death.
When the assistant director questioned the timeframe, Gainey admitted to falsifying the final check.
Philadelphia Police executed a search warrant at the facility soon after and revealed they were treating his death as ‘suspicious’.
They reviewed surveillance video from the lobby and determined that Gainey did not perform a single neurological exam on McMaster after his fall.
The medical examiner ruled that McMaster died of blunt force trauma.
‘She did not perform one – not one – neurological check on Mr McMaster, and even lied on the paperwork that she did,’ Attorney General Shapiro said.
‘The evidence shows that Gainey intentionally, knowingly and recklessly caused serious bodily injury to Mr McMaster by failing to provide treatment or care. We will hold her – and anyone else who knowingly neglects a care-dependent person in Pennsylvania – accountable.’
Gainey was taken into custody on Thursday without incident and arraigned on the charges.
H.R. McMaster has not talked personally about the charges, but the family released the following statement.
‘Our father, Lieutenant Colonel Herbert R. McMaster (U.S. Army, retired), was a tough and compassionate soldier and public servant.
‘He was committed to his neighbors, his fellow soldiers, his community and his country.
‘The best way to honor his memory is for all of us to do all we can to prevent others from suffering at the hands of those who lack compassion and abandon even the most basic standards of human decency. Today’s charges are an important step forward in that connection.’