Lincolnton nurse accused of stealing pills from patients to sell them

LINCOLNTON, N.C. — A nurse at a rehabilitation center in Lincolnton is accused of stealing pills from the patients she was supposed to help and selling them.

A routine traffic stop led to the arrest of the nurse who works at Cardinal Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center.

Wendy Jaynes is accused of stealing more than two dozen pain pills and nearly fifty doses of the medication found in Xanax.

Police began their investigation into missing medication four months ago at the Cardinal Healthcare Rehabilitation Center, but it was a routine traffic stop in Lincolnton that led to a break in the case.

"Had (the drugs) it in the car with them, and it was in plain view so the officer using his investigative skills built it from there," Lincolnton Police Chief Rodney Jordan said.

Carroll Cooke's mom is a resident and was disappointed to hear a caregiver had been arrested.

"People are humans and we all make mistakes, but that's a pretty serious one, when it lands you in jail,” Cooke said.

A spokesperson for the provider, Consulate Health Care, released a statement Thursday.

"We are working internally and with local and state agencies to ensure that all protocols are in place to ensure the safety and well-being of our patients," said Jennifer L. Trapp, vice president of Corporate Communications, Consulate Health Care.

She said they could not talk about the ongoing investigation.

Families we spoke with today are concerned loved ones may not have received the medications they were prescribed because of the alleged thefts.

"That's why you should do a random check on everybody, especially in these nursing homes,” family member Helen Harbison said. “Because these people that are here, this is the last home that they're ever going to have."

Jaynes lost her license to nurse here in the state, according to the North Carolina Board of Nursing.

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