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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The case against the man accused of killing a hospital security guard is moving forward. Police said the man charged was a patient in the psychiatric unit who became extremely violent.
Dec. 20, 2017, was Randy Winterrowd’s last day of working as a security guard at Heritage Valley Beaver Hospital.
“He was really happy about going on and moving on. But he loved his job,” said Randy Winterrowd when asked about his late son.
The 44-year-old had a new job lined up but never got a chance to start it.
“He has a daughter Ashley, great-granddaughter Isabella, and his wife Peggy. She talks to people at work who were working with him, and they’re still very surprised that this happened,” said Patty Winterrowd, Randy’s mother.
According to police, 25-year-old John Fletcher was a patient in the psychiatric unit that day and became extremely violent and combative when getting his medication — kicking and fighting several security officers.
“My client never laid a hand on the victim, never punched him, never kicked him, never directly engaged him,” said Fletcher’s attorney, Blaine Jones.
Police said Winterrowd collapsed during the fight and became unresponsive.
“It sounds as though, unfortunately, the victim died of a heart attack in the process of helping during the struggle,” said Jones.
Winterrowd passed away in January after being on life-support for over a month.
“He was a wonderful son and he belonged to the Volunteer Fire Department,” said Randy Winterrowd.
Two security guards testified during the preliminary hearing that lasted over an hour.
“I asked both witnesses if there is any camera footage because we haven’t been provided any type of camera footage. And you know, one would think that there would be surveillance cameras, particularly on a psychiatric ward, on every inch of it,” said Jones.
All of the criminal charges against Fletcher were held. Trial is set for March 4, 2019.
“So many nurses come up to us and say they’re going to miss him. And I miss him, too,” said Randy Winterrowd.