Killer Nurse: How the system failed

Elizabeth Wettlaufer murdered eight seniors in Ontario nursing homes over a period of nine years. Following the public inquiry, Alex Roslin explores how budget cuts, poor staffing and ageism in the long-term care system created an environment for the serial killer to run amok.

(ZOOMER Magazine) November 2018, by Alex Roslin—Elizabeth Wettlaufer made an odd discovery when she was hospitalized in the psychiatric ward. Thinking about murder made her anger go away. Sort of. Wettlaufer had a lot of anger  so much that she could barely concentrate. She was also quite depressed and had been diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive behaviour.

She was in the hospital because she had tried to kill herself with an overdose of medications. When that failed, she had stolen cleaning fluid from a hospital with the idea of drinking it to commit suicide. But then, she realized something.... 

Read the article here, get a copy of the magazine here and read my Zoomer blog posts about the provincial inquiry into Wettlaufer's murder spree here.

Opinion: Quebec's BEI falls short of expectations

Civilian-led watchdog was supposed to finally bring independence and transparency to investigations of violent incidents involving police.

(The Montreal Gazette) December 11, 2018, by Alex Roslin—Recent weeks have seen a succession of controversies about the secrecy and alleged pro-police bias of Quebec’s new police watchdog agency, the Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes.

Created two and a half years ago to investigate officers involved in shootings and other serious incidents, the civilian-led BEI was supposed to finally bring independence and transparency to investigations.

But the BEI is starting to look like a step backward. Of 110 investigations started so far, none has led to charges. That’s actually worse than before the BEI, when police were routinely accused of covering for each other when investigating fellow cops.

Before the BEI, 10 charges were filed in 526 investigations of police officers from 1999 to 2016, according to Quebec public security ministry data. The charging rate back then was ultra-low — just 1.9 per cent — but at least it was better than the BEI’s dismal batting average of zero.... Read the full op-ed piece here.