DHMC shooting suspect pleads not guilty

by Julian Nathan | 9/14/17 2:10am

Officials stated that Travis Frink of Warwick, Rhode Island “admitted” that he shot his mother, Pamela Ferriere, at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center on Tuesday in an affidavit released Wednesday. The incident prompted an active shooter alert that evacuated the entire hospital. Frink was arraigned and pleaded not guilty to a charge of first-degree murder on Wednesday.

The affidavit stated that Pamela Ferriere and Robert Ferriere, Frink’s stepfather, were expecting Frink to visit the hospital. Pamela Ferriere was a patient in the intensive care unit after suffering an aneurysm and was scheduled to be discharged on Friday. A nurse told police that she noticed Frink enter Pamela Ferriere’s room holding a small duffel bag. Frink asked Robert Ferriere for time alone with Pamela Ferriere, and Robert Ferriere left the room. Frink then pulled out a black handgun and pointed it at his mother and fired several shots. The Lebanon police received a 911 call from DHMC at about 1:24 p.m.

An autopsy report released by the New Hampshire Attorney General’s Office on Wednesday concluded that Pamela Ferriere died from blood loss as a result of four gunshot wounds to her chest, abdomen and pelvis.

Frink was taken into custody about an hour after the shooting without incident.

At approximately 5:20 p.m, Frink waived his Miranda rights and told New Hampshire police that he had driven to the hospital on Tuesday from Rhode Island with the intention of killing his mother.

Frink pleaded not guilty at his arraignment on Wednesday and is being held without bail. His public defender Rebecca McKinnon agreed to prosecutors’ requests that Frink have no contact with his stepfather.

DHMC chief legal officer John Kacavas thanked patients, doctors, nurses and staff for their courage at a press conference at DHMC on Wednesday afternoon.

“This is a resilient organization … and we are in recovery from this traumatic event, and [Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center] will continue to be strong,” Kacavas said.

Kacavas also thanked members of law enforcement who responded to Tuesday’s emergency and others from across the country who sent messages of support to the hospital.

DHMC chief clinical officer Edward Merrens offered his condolences to Pamela Ferriere’s family and praised hospital staff for adhering to emergency procedures following the shooting.

“At a time of an active shooter … we did what we were trained to do, which was to go through the steps necessary to protect staff and patients and collaborate with the authorities,” Merrens said. “Every effort was made to take care of the patients that are under our care.”

Merrens said that on Wednesday, normal operations at the hospital resumed and scheduled treatments proceeded as planned. He also explained that the hospital is reviewing its security protocols in light of Tuesday’s killing and that new measures might restrict the passage of patients within the hospital.

DHMC emergency management coordinator Jim Alexander said that there are no plans to arm hospital security officers, noting that law enforcement officials captured Frink relatively quickly and it would be “reactionary” to station officers with guns in a hospital.

The College’s Twitter account encouraged its students, faculty and staff to reach out to its Counseling and Human Development office and dean on call if they’d like to talk to a counselor. Safety and Security can help community members find assistance 24/7 at (603) 643-4000.