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Jeffrey Lynn FELTNER





Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Nurse's aide - Mercy killings
Number of victims: 8
Date of murders: 1988 - 1989
Date of arrest: August 1989
Date of birth: 1963
Victims profile: Elderly men and women (patients)
Method of murder: Suffocation
Location: Florida, USA
Status: Sentenced to life in prison, with a mandatory 25-year minimum sentence, 1991. Died of AIDS in prison, March 17, 1993.

Jeffrey Lynn Feltner, a White male, was born in 1963. His parents separated three months before Feltner was born and he grew up living with his mother and three older siblings in Miami. Throughout his life, Feltner was small in stature: As a fully-grown adult, he was only 5’3” tall and weighed just over 100 pounds. As a child, he was often teased by other children because of his size. Instead of playing with other children, Feltner preferred to stay indoors and work on domestic activities and chores.

At the age of 16, Feltner moved with his mother, who had remarried, and siblings to Melrose, Florida. Feltner seemed to adjust well and made friends in the new community. He was an average student, making mostly Bs and Cs on his report cards. During this time, Feltner began to secretly visit homosexual locales.

After graduating from high school, Feltner began working the 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. shift at the same nursing home where his mother was employed as a nursing assistant. Here, as a nurse’s aide, his performance was so exceptional that he was quickly promoted to aide supervisor.

In July of 1988, an anonymous caller to a crisis line and television station confessed to killing several residents of the nursing home. The caller identified himself as a nurse’s aide and confessed to the mercy killings of three females and two males. The caller also warned that he would probably kill again. Investigators questioned Feltner, but, because of the lack of evidence, the investigation was put on hold. At that point, the calls began again. This time the caller confessed to the attempted murder of another patient, but when authorities investigated the claims, there was no evidence to support them, in fact, the evidence seemed to contradict what the caller claimed to have done.

Nevertheless, Feltner was arrested and charged with making harassing phonecalls, trespassing, and filing a false report. He was found guilty on all charges and spent four months in jail. After his release, Feltner visited his father in Michigan for a short time and then went back to Florida.

Feltner moved to Daytona Beach and found employment at a temporary agency for healthcare professionals. He was employed by several nursing homes and often worked the evening shift. Around this same time, Feltner was diagnosed with Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). He again began making anonymous phone calls to television stations, law enforcement agencies, and mental health agencies. In these calls, he confessed to killing two more patients, bringing the total of alleged murders to seven. He included his modus operandi of asphyxiation in these conversations. Feltner also discussed these murders with his roommate, who immediately notified law enforcement.

After an investigation, Feltner was arrested in August of 1989 on one charge of first-degree murder. While under arrest, Feltner confessed to the murder. He also confessed to the mercy killing at least one other victim at the nursing home where he was first employed after high school. This victim’s body was exhumed, an autopsy was performed, and the remains exhibited evidence of foul play.

Investigating the other murders confessed through the anonymous phone calls, proved to be quite difficult because many of the bodies had been cremated. Subsequently, when the investigation was concluded, Feltner was charged with only two murders.

Feltner was held without bail and, while awaiting trial, he recanted his confessions. In a letter to his father, he stated that his confessions were only a ploy to draw attention to the poor conditions and neglect in nursing homes. While in jail, Feltner intentionally cut his wrists and upper arm on separate occasions.

During his first trial, he pled not guilty to the first-degree murder charge. Hislawyer attempted to plea bargain with a second-degree murder charge in exchange for a 40-year maximum sentence, but the judge rejected it. Feltner then changed his plea to guilty on one first-degree murder charge. He was sentenced to life in prison, with a mandatory 25-year minimum sentence. A few days after this sentence, he pled guilty in his second trial, to a second-degree murder charge and was sentence to an additional 17 years in prison (“A Nursing Aide”, 1990; Lavin, 1990; Lavin & Journey, 1990; Linedecker & Burt, 1990).

Serial Murder In Institutional Settings by Jennifer D. Grinea


Nurse's Aide Held In Volusia Man Tells Police He Killed Nursing Home Patient

By Shirish Date -

August 17, 1989

DAYTONA BEACH — A nurse's aide was charged with murder Wednesday after telling police he killed a nursing home patient last month - two years after failing to sell a similar tale to Putnam County investigators.

Daytona Beach police arrested Jeffrey Lynn Feltner, 26, in the July 11 death of Doris Moriarty at Clyatt Memorial Center. He is being held without bail in the Volusia County Jail on one count of first-degree murder.

Moriarty, 83, of Port Orange, had been a Clyatt patient for three years before dying about a month after Feltner began working there.

Police said Feltner confessed to killing a patient in Ormond Beach and five at a Putnam County home about two years ago. The Putnam County Sheriff's Office said the latter claim was checked out and discounted.

''We poked holes in everything,'' said Putnam sheriff's Capt. Cliff Miller. ''It looks as if he was looking for attention.''

Feltner lived above a bar on Main Street in Daytona Beach, but was arrested at mental health crisis center he had entered last week, police said. His journey to jail began about two weeks ago with a call to a television station.

Kent Morton, assignment editor at WESH-Channel 2's Daytona Beach office, said a man calling himself ''Jack'' told him that a friend he had met in a bar had killed at least seven patients over the past few years to ''relieve them of their pain.''

Morton said ''Jack'' called back on Aug. 9, repeating his story. Morton said he notified Daytona Beach police after each call, and said he encouraged ''Jack'' to do the same.

''He sounded very rational,'' Morton said. ''As it turns out, it appears he was describing himself.''

Police got a third call on Aug. 10, from Clyatt's administrator, William Powell. Powell said Feltner was working the night Moriarty died and told a nurse that she ought to check on her. ''I think what we gathered is that he looked in and saw that she had died,'' Powell said. ''That's what we thought he meant.''

Feltner failed to show up for work July 15 and 16, and was fired, Powell said. Apart from that, Powell said, Feltner was an excellent worker.

On Aug. 10, Powell said a nursing pool called to tell him that Feltner's roommate had called them and said Feltner had admitted suffocating patients. Powell said he called police immediately afterward.



MO: Hospital nurse who smothered patients.

DISPOSITION: Pled guilty on two counts, receiving life term + 17 years, 1991; died of AIDS in prison, Mar. 17, 1993.



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