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Beaver Mental Health Patient Charged In Fatal Beating

(Credit: KDKA)

(Credit: KDKA)

Harold Hayes Harold Hayes
Harold Hayes joined KDKA-TV in August of 1979 as a general assignment...
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BEAVER (KDKA) — A patient in the mental health unit of Heritage Valley Beaver Hospital who attacked a fellow patient will be charged with criminal homicide.

Gerald Rooney, Jr., 82, suffered from dementia. Peter Kuchynsky, 58, is diagnosed as schizophrenic.

Police say an employee of the hospital found Rooney unconscious outside his room last Wednesday which is not far from Kuchynsky’s room.

Another witness told police they saw Rooney being physically thrown out of Kuchynsky’s room.

Kuchynsky told police in a thick Ukrainian accent that someone entered his room looking for a jacket.

Kuchynsky, according to staff members, was said to be upset and sometimes violent when someone either enters his room or comes near his belongings.

Police are investigating the possibility that Rooney was confused about where he was and hit his head when he was thrown out of Kuchynsky’s room.

Rooney died Sunday of head trauma.

The hospital has no comment. Kuchynsky has a preliminary hearing scheduled for this week.

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