A UCLA medical student allegedly stole an iPad from a dying cancer patient, and now, she’s facing felony theft charges.
According to reports, 32-year-old Virginia Nguyen has been charged with petty theft, grand theft of lost property, and computer access and fraud.
Natalie Packer was a patient at Ronald Regan UCLA Medical Center and was being treated for aggressive breast cancer. One day, Packer suddenly went into cardiac arrest, a Code Blue was called, and a team attempted to revive her. Immediately after that ordeal, Packer’s family noticed that her iPad was missing and they were devastated because the dying woman used it to write messages to her sister Nicole.
Not long after Packer’s death, her family used a finder app on the iPad to track down its location and discovered that it was still somewhere in the hospital. When they saw the registration, however, they were shocked that the person who took it had changed it from “Natalie’s iPad” to “Virginia’s iPad.”
After contacting police, the device was found with Nguyen, a third-year medical student, and this past March, she was arrested. Now, charges have officially been filed, and the student has pleaded not guilty.
Nguyen claims that she thought the iPad was hers when she stole it from Packer’s room, but the deceased woman’s family doesn’t buy those claims.
“If you analyze it, it's a pretty lame defense,” said Packer’s uncle Sam Heller, who adds that his niece was the type of person that would have given the iPad to someone who wanted it badly enough.
UCLA says that Nguyen is no longer employed at UCLA but has not commented on her status as a student.
Sources: Daily Mail, NBC Los Angeles