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Suspect in nursing death may face still more charges

Brian K. Rosenfeld, already charged with murdering one of his nursing home patients, likely will be indicted in the deaths of two other elderly people, his attorney says.

Defense attorney Larry Hoffman said Thursday that prosecutors have told him they will present evidence to a Pinellas County grand jury showing that Rosenfeld killed two other patients.

That could happen as early as March, the defense attorney said.

Hoffman said he learned prosecutors were seeking the additional indictments against Rosenfeld after he approached them recently to discuss a plea agreement.

He said Pinellas-Pasco Assistant State Attorney Fred Schaub told him that prosecutors thought they had enough evidence to convince a grand jury that Rosenfeld is responsible for more deaths.

Schaub did not deny Hoffman's statements but commented only briefly.

"It hasn't been finalized over here yet," the prosecutor said.

"There's a grand jury set in March and no final decisions have been made. It's a continuing investigation and we can't comment."

Rosenfeld, a 34-year-old nurse, was charged with first-degree murder in August 1990 after two nurse's aides at Rosedale Manor nursing home said he injected a suspicious fluid into the feeding tube of 80-year-old patient Muriel Watts.

An autopsy revealed that she had died from a massive dose of the tranquilizer Mellaril.

Hoffman said that if Rosenfeld is indicted in the additional deaths, he will immediately try to work out a deal with prosecutors.

He said he wants them to consider giving Rosenfeld three concurrent life sentences in exchange for a guilty plea.

"If he's indicted . . . I'm going to have him in court as quick as possible," Hoffman said.

"I don't see any reason to delay it any longer."

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