Plea deal offered in Pandora nursing home death
OTTAWA — The final nursing employee charged in the death of a resident in January appeared in the Putnam County Court of Common Pleas Thursday for a final pre-trial hearing before facing a jury trial.
Megan E. Schnipke, 31, of Columbus Grove, was met by two rows of the family of Phyllis J. Campbell, the 76-year-old Hilty Memorial Nursing Home resident who wandered outside and froze to death Jan. 6 in Pandora.
Putnam County Prosecutor Gary Lammers offered Schnipke a deal. Lammers said if Schnipke pleaded guilty to forgery, a fifth-degree felony, and gross patient neglect, a first-degree misdemeanor, the state would dismiss the third charge she is facing, patient neglect, a second-degree misdemeanor.
Lammers said the state would agree to her being sentenced to community control but would remain silent as to what form that control took, except she would be required to pay $4,536.88 restitution jointly with her two co-defendants, Rachel R. Friesel, 36, of Pandora, and Destini M. Fenbert, 20, of Pandora. Friesel and Fenbert already accepted plea deals.
Judge Keith Schierloh set a deadline for Schnipke to accept the deal — Oct. 17. If she doesn’t accept the deal by that time she will face a jury trial set to begin at 8:30 a.m. Nov. 5 and will continue on Nov. 6 and 7.