How in the world can a former nurse who prosecutors believe may be responsible for the deaths of more than 40 babies in her care walk out of prison a free woman?
Why do the good people of South Texas have nothing but bad things to say about former pediatric nurse Genene Jones? Genene Jones is a baby killer, convicted of the murder of 15-month-old Chelsea McClellan. Chelsea died 34 years ago.
Jones was a beautician turned nurse in the pediatric intensive care unit at what used to be called Bexar County Hospital in San Antonio.
So many children died while Jones was on duty, people started calling it the "Death Shift." An internal investigation at the time reportedly called the deaths "unexplained events."
The hospital's report says: "This association of Nurse Jones with the deaths of ten children could be coincidental. However, negligence or wrongdoing cannot be excluded."
Instead of firing Jones, the hospital barred her from working in the pediatric intensive care unit since, as an unlicensed vocational nurse, she did not have the training of a registered nurse.
Jones soon quit, and the "unexplained events" ceased.
In Kerrville, Texas, there was once a medical clinic where Jones came to get a fresh start, still working as a nurse. But soon the reign of terror that shook San Antonio showed up in Kerrville. Eight children came down with serious emergencies with one common thread: They had all been in Jones's care.
That's how Chelsea McClellan ended up in the clutches of the "Angel of Death."
Chelsea was rushed to the hospital with Jones riding in the ambulance. Jones had injected Chelsea with a powerful muscle relaxant called succinylcholine. It stops breathing almost instantly and leads to cardiac arrest. Jones allegedly gave her a second dose in the ambulance.
"Once it's given to someone it very quickly disappears and turns into things we have an awful lot of in our bodies," said Robert Middleberg, a toxicologist at NMS Labs in Willow Grove, Pennsylvania. "[Succinylcholine] will induce effects anywhere from 30 seconds to a minute and it will last only about seven minutes, and that's why it's such a perfect poison to kill someone."
The grand jury investigated why there were so many children dying.
An eyewitness testified against Jones, but how would they get the physical evidence to prove murder? Five-thousand miles away, in Sweden, researchers invented a new test to detect small amounts of succinylcholine. Chelsea's body was exhumed, and minute traces of the drug were found. That was enough to slap the cuffs on her.
Genene Jones was charged with several counts, including the murder of Chelsea and injury to a child.
The only thing scarier and more troubling than what she's accused of doing -- is the fact that she could be getting out of prison. Convicted baby-killer Genene Jones is about to walk out of prison a free woman.
Texas prosecutors believe she might have been involved in the deaths of dozens more, even though she's never been charged in connection with those deaths. Now she's about to become the first suspected female serial killer ever to be released from an American prison.
Genene Jones was found guilty by a jury of her peers and sentenced to 99 years in prison. It seemed Jones would take her last breath behind bars, and some people hoped she would. But the law that was intended to fight for the tiny victims she tortured had an unbelievable string attached to it -- A legal loophole
Why will this monster be set loose? When Jones was convicted of the lethal injection murder of Chelsea McClellan in 1984, Texas law reduced sentences by up to two-thirds to alleviate prison overcrowding. That means Jones will be freed in 2018.
Law enforcement in South Texas is working feverishly to figure out a way to keep Jones locked up for good.