Jennifer Hall arrested in Kansas on Livingston County warrant for murder

Jennifer Anne Hall wanted photo

Livingston County Sheriff Steve Cox announced on Thursday night the arrest in Kansas of 41-year-old Jennifer Anne Hall, who was wanted for alleged first-degree murder in connection with the death of a patient.

Sheriff Steve Cox said Hall is to be extradited at their earliest opportunity from Kansas to Livingston County. She was arrested at 6:40 pm Thursday by Kansas authorities on the Livingston County arrest warrant which Cox explained is an allegation.  Hall’s photo was placed one week ago on the Livingston County Sheriff Department’s most wanted list.

A probable cause statement says Hall, who was a respiratory therapist at Hedrick Medical Center, was placed on administrative leave after the death of Fern Franco 20 years ago on May 18, 2002. Franco reportedly was a pneumonia patient.

A probable cause affidavit alleges during Hall’s employment, the number of cardiac collapse incidents rose to as many as 18 medically suspicious incidents during her five months of employment.

The body of Fern Franco was disinterred and an autopsy revealed the presence of substances not prescribed to her and not ordered by doctors. An analysis of tissue samples obtained from an autopsy revealed the presence of two drugs succinylcholine and morphine. Succinylcholine is a skeletal muscle relaxant for intravenous administration indicated as an adjunct to general anesthesia, to facilitate tracheal intubation, and to provide skeletal muscle relaxation during surgery. Morphine is a drug used in the relief of moderate to severe pain. The statement notes the drugs can paralyze a victim’s muscles including the diaphragm causing suffocation.

A toxicology expert offered an opinion that Franco’s cause of death was due to poisoning and that the manner of death was a homicide.