Deadly Nurse May Have Murdered Almost 40 People for Being 'Annoying'

killer nurse Italy

There are news stories that are worth talking about because they raise interesting or important issues, and then there are news stories that you have to talk about because they’re just, like, yeeeeeeesh. That’s the sort of story I’ve got for you today, right in time for Halloween: a killer nurse who may have murdered up to 38 patients. Not that I’m making light of this by lumping it into the same category as fun-sized chocolates and styrofoam tombstones, but it’s so flat-out creepy, it just seems appropriate for October.

Daniela Poggiali, 42, has been arrested by Italian police and alleged with killing almost 40 people because they or their families “annoyed” her. And if that’s not bad enough, she apparently took a SELFIE with at least one of the corpses after she’d done the deed.


Gawker reports that coworkers described Poggiali as a “cold, polished” person who sometimes sedated her patients just because they were bothersome. I’ve gotta be honest, I occasionally fantasized about doing this to my kids when they were younger and had a habit of screeching at 3 a.m., but I NEVER WENT THROUGH WITH IT. Poggiali’s coworkers also said she gave patients heavy laxatives to make things harder for the next nurse on duty (as well as the patient, presumably).

Here’s a Twitter photo of Poggiali, who hopefully does not have a dead body just out of frame:

Poggiali was taken into custody over the weekend and booked for the alleged slaying of 78-year-old patient Rosa Calderoni. Calderoni went into the hospital with a routine illness before she died unexpectedly, and according to the Central European News, tests showed she died with a high amount of potassium in her system, which can provoke cardiac arrest.

Poggiali was arrested in 11 patient deaths, and it turns out she’d already been under suspicion of killing another in April. At that time, police found a selfie on her phone of Poggiali giving a thumbs-up beside a dead patient. Said the prosecutor,

I can assure you in that all my professional years of seeing shocking photos, there were few such as these.

So apparently coworkers had noticed people were dying left and right during Poggiali’s shifts, and now police think she may have killed up to 38 patients who "needed extra care or had pushy relatives.” It sounds like the potassium overdoses might have been hard to track — a quick web search says hyperkalemia, the condition of elevated potassium in the blood, leads to nonspecific symptoms eventually resulting in cardiac arrhythmia or sudden cardiac death.

The perfect crime, particularly for frail or elderly patients? I guess she’s innocent until proven guilty, but these are some seriously disturbing allegations. And again, not to joke, but if you need a last-minute Halloween costume, this might give you some inspiration: a nurse costume, an evil look, and a syringe filled with bananas.

Can you believe this crazy story? Why do you suppose she was back at work after police found a selfie of her with one of her victims?

Images via v1ctor/Flickr, Twitter

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