Two Bedford nurses charged with ignoring suffering veterans under their care faced a judge in federal court Friday — with one sentenced to a year’s probation and the other pleading not guilty to diluting morphine.

“I’m just so sorry. My life hasn’t been the same since that night. I haven’t slept,” said former Bedford VA Medical Center nurse Patricia Waible before being given a year of probation.

Waible played video games while her patient was dying and lied to federal investigators about it, prosecutors said.

“I just can’t believe I did what I did,” said the 52-year-old Waible.

Court documents show Waible lied about conducting hourly “bed checks” on patients during an overnight shift on July 3, 2016. Her patient, Vietnam veteran Bill Nutter, 68 — referred to only as “Patient 1” in court documents — “suffered from several serious medical ailments” and was “found unresponsive and not breathing” at about 7 that morning.

Waible, of Nashua, N.H., pleaded guilty this summer to making false statements to investigators, court documents show.

Federal Court Judge Dennis Saylor cited Waible’s physical health, family responsibilities, age and clean prior record as reasons for the “light” sentence.

Waible’s attorney, Paul Garrity, said, “She is remorseful for what she did and feels bad for the family of the patient that was involved in this case.”

In a separate case, another Bedford VA nurse, who is accused of diluting morphine doses to veterans in hospice and may have increased one patient’s suffering the day before he died, was arraigned in federal court Friday and pleaded not guilty.

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Kathleen Noftle, 55, of Tewksbury was charged by indictment with one count of tampering with a consumer product and one count of obtaining a controlled substance by misrepresentation, fraud and deception, according to the office of U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling.

Noftle, appearing in court Friday, pleaded not guilty to both charges.



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