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Kristen Diane Parker, the self-professed needle-loving surgical tech accused of stealing syringes filled with the painkiller Fentanyl and replacing them with dirty needles and saline solution, told police she tried to hide her drug habit. She switched needles 15 to 20 times in five months at Rose Medical Center in Denver and at Audubon Surgery Center in Colorado Springs, according to a videotaped interview with a Denver police detective (via The Gazette). “I didn’t want to make it obvious to everybody that I was using,” she told detective Dale Wallis, as seen in a video played in a court hearing yesterday. “I didn’t want to lose my job.”
Parker, 26, was denied bail yesterday. She knew she had hepatitis C before she began working at Rose in April, according to testimony, although her attorney tried to downplay the importance, arguing that Parker did not understand how bad the condition is. According to the videotape, Parker never followed up after being diagnosed, partly because she didn’t have health insurance. At least 10 people could have contracted the liver-harming disease because of Parker’s actions–roughly 6,000 patients are being tested. Parker, who is facing decades in prison, is “a study in contrasts,” writes The Denver Post, noting her love for family and her use of heroin for several months in New Jersey last year. “I know I’m a good person,” she told Wallis. “I just do some stupid stuff.”
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