Man shoots, kills mother in ICU of Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

A man shot and killed his 70-year-old mother in the ICU of Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, N.H., Tuesday afternoon.

The incident, which occurred on the hospital's fourth floor at approximately 2 p.m. EST, left the academic medical center issuing a Code Silver alert, evacuating ambulatory patients and staff, and going into lockdown, according to Dartmouth-Hitchcock spokesperson Mike Barwell.

More than 100 first responders attended to the area. Police apprehended the suspect, 49-year-old Travis Frink of Rhode Island, by 2:49 p.m. EST as he was trying to leave the hospital campus and took him into custody. He is charged with first-degree murder and expected to face a judge in Grafton County Superior Court Wednesday, according to WMUR Manchester.

Investigators have not released information about Mr. Frink's motive, although New Hampshire Attorney General Gordon MacDonald did note Mr. Frink's main purpose in visiting the hospital was apparently to shoot his mother, according to WMUR.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of the patient who died," Dartmouth-Hitchcock President and CEO Joanne Conroy, MD, wrote in a memo to staff. "We will work closely with local and state law enforcement to learn how this happened, so that we can ensure this will never happen to one of our patients ever again."

Dr. Conroy applauded the D-H team for following instruction and abiding by their training for emergencies as they either evacuated the hospital premises or sheltered in place indoors. The hospital was cleared by police and security and the building reopened around 5:10 p.m. EST.

"You became very creative over the hours…one team set up a MASH unit in the parking lot and saw over 40 patients, removed stitches, changed dressings and scheduled those patients to return later this week for follow-up," she wrote. "For those that sheltered in place, thank you for the care and comfort you gave to patients and their families during this stressful time."

Resources are being deployed to assist physicians, nurses and other staff who witnessed the incident and may be impacted, Mr. Barwell said. Dr. Conroy is hosting a town hall meeting Wednesday to discuss next steps for employees in recovery from the event. All clinical operations at the hospital have resumed as normal.

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