Florida Keys

Tourist punches out nurse in ER; prescriptions apparently at root of it

In a not-so-genius move on Monday, an Orlando man not happy with the service he got at Lower Keys Medical Center decided to serve up his own medicine.

Ryan Thomas Edison, 31, was booked into the Stock Island jail Monday afternoon on a felony count of assault on an emergency medical care provider for allegedly punching a hospital nurse in the face. He was released Tuesday at 9:38 p.m. under a $5,000 bond.

According to a report by police officer Kuniko Keohane, Edison went to the Stock Island hospital's Emergency Department around 2 a.m. Monday with symptoms of nausea and dizziness.

After he was examined, given a non-narcotic prescription and discharged, he went back to his hotel room and later found that a housekeeper may have thrown out his medications. So he called Lower Keys Medical to get new prescriptions but, according to Edison, hospital staff said no because they were controlled substances.

He drove back to the hospital around 4 a.m. and began to feel dizzy again and was readmitted, then discharged again. Nurse practitioner Kevin Lawson, 44, told Keohane that Edison again asked for a prescription and in fact it was filled and a nurse filled out the final discharge paperwork.

Then for no apparent reason, Keohane wrote, Edison ran out of the room "screaming and cursing" at Lawson.

Edison then got into Lawson's face, taking a swing at him and missing before landing a blow on the left side of his face. Lawson pushed Edison back before Edison was restrained by security.

Besides a hematoma in the temple area, Keohane wrote that Lawson may have also dislocated or fractured his right middle finger

"Edison repeated several parts of his story several times," Keohane wrote, "but never revealed why he struck the male nurse."

Go to KeysNet.com to read more.