Convicted Killer Hired As Nurse

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Joseph Mannino, a registered nurse who previously served three years in a North Carolina prison on an involuntary manslaughter conviction, was fired from his job at Lehigh Valley Hospital in 2008 for lying about his conviction status on his application for employment.  Time employed before the hospital found out: about three years.

Why did three years go by before his lie was discovered?  I have a better question.  Why didn’t the hospital learn of his conviction when they conducted the background check on him?  Better yet, how was he able to get a nursing license in the state of Pennsylvania?

If you guessed that both his nursing school and employer only conducted statewide criminal checks through the Pennsylvania State Police, you are spot on!

While the PA State Police criminal check may be a good tool to finding records in the state of Pennsylvania (but only as a supplement to a comprehensive countywide criminal search -remember!), it is definitely not a good source for any records maintained beyond its borders.  His school and employer make the argument that he met the two year residency requirement so that is why the statewide search was conducted.  In no way is that a legitimate excuse for not knowing about the conviction!  Convicted felons should not get a pass just because they meet some arbitrary residency requirement.  This is a person who was employed to care for vulnerable people, had access to controlled substances and sensitive personal  information.  The bottom line is that his employer should have been aware of his criminal past prior to making the hiring decision.  Conducting a thorough criminal search in all of the places your applicant has lived and worked (as far back as you can go) is the best way to find out who you are really employing.

Convicted Killer Hired As Nurse

By Bo Koltnow, WFMZ-TV – March 15, 2010

SALISBURY TWP., Pa. — A convicted killer landed a nursing job and years went by before he was outed.  

By all accounts, Joseph Mannino of Palmer Township, Northampton County was a good employee when he worked as a nurse for Lehigh Valley Hospital.

But in 2008, he had his nursing license revoked and was fired for lying on his job application.  

The lie? Not being a convicted felon.  

Lehigh Valley Hospital said it never would have hired Mannino in 2005 if it knew then what it knows now. 

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