The death of a patient following a struggle with security guards at MedStar Washington Hospital Center in D.C. has been deemed a homicide.
James E. McBride, 74, died from blunt force injuries to the neck, including damage to his spinal cord, the medical examiner's office announced Monday.
McBride, a husband and father, was a patient at MedStar Washington Hospital Center when he left the hospital on the evening of Sept. 29 without having been formally discharged, Dr. Arthur St. André, the clinical director for Surgical Critical Care Services, said at a press conference after McBride's death.
McBride was then spotted at the nearby MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital and was being escorted back to the hospital's main entrance when he encountered two MedStar Washington Hospital Center security guards.
A police report said McBride "became non-compliant and resisted," and was pulled to the ground. He became distressed and was resuscitated by a nurse who had been escorting him back to the hospital, St. André said.
McBride died two days later. He was "a loving husband to his wife of 40 years, and a wonderful father to his son and daughter," the hospital said in a statement issued in September on behalf of McBride's family.
The hospital has not said what sparked the clash and has not identified the security guards, who sources tell News4 no longer work there.
In the wake of McBride's death, the hospital has examined what happened, they said in a statement issued Monday.
"Immediately following the tragic event, we conducted a series of analyses to gain a complete understanding of the situation," the statement said. "We have integrated several new initiatives, including enhanced communications and training with all care teams and security officers. We also identified a unique multi-disciplinary team to respond to certain high-risk situations."
The hospital is cooperating with an investigation being conducted by the U.S. Attorney's Office, the hospital's statement said.
"As always, our commitment is to provide the highest quality, safest care to every patient, every day, and our post-event evaluations were focused on ensuring that nothing like this ever happens again," the statement said.