DENVER (KDVR) — Documents give more insight into what led up to a 19-year-old’s death during a breast augmentation surgery.
Dr. Geoffrey Kim and nurse anesthetist Rex Meeker face criminal charges in the death of Emmalyn Nguyen, who went into a coma on Aug. 1, 2019 and died 14 months later in October 2020.
Court documents present a timeline from doctors’ notes showing Nguyen receiving local anesthesia at 2 p.m. then CPR 15 minutes later when she’s found not breathing. It then shows a five-and-a-half-hour wait before a 911 call at 7:35 pm.
Documents show the investigator asked an expert doctor at what point he would call 911 after a cardiac event. The expert shared the following answer:
“Immediately. At a surgical center like that, where there’s no backup, no resources, it’s immediate,” the expert said.
Notes from a police interview with Nguyen’s mother explain that Kim went into the waiting room hours after she initially stopped breathing and told her everything was “fine,” that it was just “taking longer than expected for her to wake up.”
Documents reveal Kim is charged with first-degree assault and criminally negligent homicide because the investigator finds he showed “extreme indifference to the value of human life” by:
- refusing his staff’s requests to call 911 after performing CPR
- failing to provide accurate information to Nguyen’s mother, who would have sought advanced medical care for her daughter had she known of the situation
- failing to recognize traumatic injury to Nguyen’s brain and not seeking immediate advanced medical care
- providing misinformation to emergency medical personnel as to when Nguyen had her cardiac event
- and providing misinformation to an emergency room doctor on two separate occasions, which led to the further neglect in Nguyen’s care
Documents reveal nurse anesthetist Rex Meeker is charged with manslaughter for “recklessly causing the death of Nguyen from similar allegations plus, failing to properly observe her after administering anesthesia and failing to recognize she was not breathing for 15 minutes.”