Inquiry hears care facility felt lucky to have Wettlaufer when she was hired

Elizabeth Wettlaufer’s direct supervisor broke down on the stand Friday at a public inquiry in St. Thomas probing the murders of eight seniors at the hands of the nurse.

Helen Crombez, the nursing director at Caressant Care in Woodstock when Wettlaufer killed seven of her eight victims, said when Wettlaufer was hired the home thought they were lucky to have her as part of the staff.

Crombez told the inquiry that the home didn’t discipline nurses for medication errors hoping that they would own up to their mistakes.

The inquiry heard that from time to time narcotics would go missing at Caressant Care. If it was serious enough they would call the police.

At Caressant Care, insulin was stored in refrigerators and in locked rooms.

Crombez said Wettlaufer was frank and took ownership of her mistakes when dealing with errors in medication during her shifts.

Crombez now believes that in March of 2008 Wettlaufer was not administering insulin to residents that needed it so she could inject others with it.

Wettlaufter’s crimes went undetected until she confessed them to mental health workers and police in 2016.

She pleaded guilty to eight counts of first-degree murder, four counts of attempted murder and two counts of aggravated assault in June 2017.

The public inquiry, which is scheduled to last several months, has said it won't compel Wettlaufer to testify as her confessions and interview have been submitted as evidence.