Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Hospital tech in Hep C saga lets guilty plea stand - The Denver Post

Hospital tech in Hep C saga lets guilty plea stand - The Denver Post

Former surgical scrub tech Kristen Diane Parker will let her guilty plea stand, even though she faces more than 20 years in prison for stealing hospital painkillers and infecting patients with hepatitis C.

Parker, 27, decided Friday against taking her case to trial, in part, her attorney said, because some of her statements were released to the public by prosecutors.

"I am concerned, had she chosen to go forward, if she would get a fair trial with the release of confidential information to the press," said her lawyer, Gregory Graf.

Parker's videotaped debriefing and other information she gave prosecutors appeared on national media outlets, including all three network newscasts, "Inside Edition" and "Oprah," Graf said.

Jeffrey Dorschner, spokesman for the Colorado U.S. attorney, said the release of Parker's videotaped debriefing was made part of the public record, and at no time did Graf object to its release.

"Our focus was on the victims and getting them as much information as possible," he said.

Last month, Parker and federal prosecutors reached an agreement that she would receive a 20-year prison term in exchange for her guilty pleas. U.S. District Judge Robert Blackburn decided to reject the plea deal because he did not have enough discretion in sentencing, and he felt the terms did not take the 35 infected victims into account.

Parker worked as a surgery scrub tech at Rose Medical Center in Denver and Audubon Ambulatory Surgery Center in Colorado Springs.

She admitted that she repeatedly stole syringes of fentanyl from operating rooms to inject herself with the painkiller, then refilled the tainted syringes with sterile saline solution and put them back.

Parker contracted hepatitis C from using heroin. Only surgical patients at Rose were infected; no patients from Audubon have tested positive.

If Blackburn sentences Parker on Feb. 24 according to federal guidelines, she faces nearly 25 years in prison, but the judge could decide to make her term more or less than that. Victims are expected to make statements to the court during her sentencing, as are Parker's parents.


Anonymous said...

The release of those vvideo tapes by the prosecution was a breach of her constitutional rights to due process and as far as i am concerned she should be sent to a drug rehabilitation program.
Attorney dorschner and the office he speaks for should understand the constitution and see to it that its followed to the letter of the law.
Celebritys hooked on drugs run to treatment when there caught why not this woman getting treatment as well. Why is our society so quick to hand out the felony and prison charge to first time offenders. I am not at all proud of our prosecuters at all.
As long as were talking about public records, check Mr. Dorschners record for dui in Wisconsin. Lets print that in the post and air it on the local tv stations.

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