Trial date set for nurse in drug thefts at Walla Walla facility

Carrie C. Daudt allegedly diverted painkillers from ICU patients for her own use.

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WALLA WALLA -- A registered nurse who worked at Providence St. Mary Medical Center pleaded innocent Monday afternoon to stealing liquid narcotics from the facility this year for her own use.

Carrie C. Daudt, 51, of 1237 Beet Road, is scheduled for trial Dec. 19 in Walla Walla County Superior Court on charges of violation of the Uniform Controlled Substances Act -- possession of hydromorphone and third-degree theft.

Daudt, who was working night shift in Providence St. Mary's Intensive Care Unit, is accused of diverting the hydromorphone -- a narcotic pain reliever in the form of liquid Dilaudid -- starting around January of this year until about May. The hospital reported it to police June 10 after a patient in ICU complained about not receiving pain medication prescribed by a doctor, according to a police report filed in court.

An internal hospital audit revealed several controlled substances were missing or otherwise unaccounted for and, when confronted, Daudt admitted to the ICU director that she had diverted missing narcotics, the police report says.

In an interview with police June 21, Daudt allegedly said she took from zero to six vials a week. She said she never used the drug at work, but would inject herself at home.

Daudt reportedly said in a subsequent police interview in June that she didn't take any other medications. "Prior to leaving (the interview) Daudt said that that was a bad time in her life and she is now seeking help," according to the police report.

Daudt, who was hired by Providence St. Mary in 2005, reportedly was placed on leave without pay when the alleged thefts came to light.

Her employment status remains the same pending results of investigations into the allegations.

Terry McConn can be reached at terrymcconn@wwub.com or 526-8319.

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