UPDATE: January 30, 2020 5:30 PM: When asked her reaction to news of the grand jury, Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) tells 13 News:
“The issue at the Clarksburg VA is something I have remained very focused on, and I have continued to stay on top of this issue. I’ve had numerous conversations with individuals about this issue, including multiple conversations with VA Secretary Wilkie, U.S. Attorney Bill Powell, Clarksburg VA Director Glenn Snider, and VA Inspector General Michael Missal. I’m frustrated that we still do not have the answers we’ve been seeking for the families and the community, and I want to see an investigation into these deaths completed promptly and thoroughly. I will continue pressing forward to reach an end-result soon so we can take the steps necessary to make sure this does not happen again.”U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV)
UPDATE: January 30, 2020 1:30 PM: When asked his reaction to news of the grand jury, Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) tells 13 News:
“I’ve been calling on DOJ and VA OIG to complete this investigation because the victim’s family members and Veterans across West Virginia deserve answers. If this reporting is true, I’m encouraged to see some forward momentum,”U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV)
UPDATE January 30, 2020: The Clarksburg VA Medical Center responds to WOWK 13 News report that a federal grand jury is now listening to witness testimony. The Chief of Public Affairs and Community Relations Service Wesley R. Walls, MA, CAVS, VHA Mentor said:
“Our hearts go out to the families affected by these tragic deaths.
Clarksburg VA Medical Center discovered these allegations and fired the individual at the center of them.
But well over a year after Clarksburg VAMC reported this issue to authorities, Veterans and families are still waiting for the independent inspector general to complete its work and provide the closure West Virginia Veterans and families deserve.
Justice is now dependent on the independent IG’s investigation, and for additional questions on the status of that investigation, we refer you to the independent inspector general. Contacts there are Michael.Nacincik@va.gov and Catherine.Gromek@va.gov“Wesley R. Walls, MA, CAVS, VHA Mentor – Chief of Public Affairs and Community Relations Service
CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (WOWK) – The investigation into 11 suspicious deaths at the VA Medical Center in Clarksburg has taken a new turn with word that a federal grand jury is now listening to witness testimony.
The Washington Post first reported, and 13 News has also confirmed, today the grand jury was empaneled earlier this month and has been hearing from nurses and medical professionals about the person of interest linked to the deaths.
At least seven deaths have the same characteristics – a veteran in relatively good health who dies quickly and has unusually high levels of insulin although none were diabetic.
13 News has previously reported the person of interest worked on the floor where all the deaths occurred. A VA spokesman confirmed the person no longer works at the medical center. We have chosen not to name the individual because no charges have been filed yet.
13 News Reporter Mark Curtis will have much more on this developing story this evening on 13 News at five o’clock.