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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Criminal Justice Quote: Catherine Wood and Gwendoline Graham: Angels of Death

     Killing to ease the stress of a bad day was part of the strategy adopted by care assistants Catherine Wood and Gwendoline Graham at the Alpine Manor Nursing Home in Walter, Michigan. To make their game more fun, they selected their elderly victims in a sequence whereby the first letter of their names spelled out the word, M.U.R.D.E.R….
 
     Wood and Graham were lesbian lovers and while they both received satisfactory job reviews, their nursing home colleagues had suspicions about their behavior. For one thing, the pair liked to boast about the callous way they treated some of their patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease which included taking souvenirs such as trinkets and ornaments. Colleagues were not sure how seriously to take things they were told.

     After a series of eight deaths at the nursing home, some of these boasts landed on fertile ground. Wood's ex-huband heard stories about patients being suffocated and, after months of indecision, eventually went to the police. The two women were arrested in December 1988 and charged with murder….

     Wood was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to twenty to forty years imprisonment while Graham, found guilty of six murders, was sentenced to life with no hope of parole.

Robin Odell, The Mammoth Book of Bizarre Crimes, 2010




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