Police in WA have dropped a fraud charge against a Perth nurse who was accused of falsely recording that a teenager had been given a COVID-19 vaccine, when the jab was never administered.
Christina Hartmann Benz, 51, was charged over allegations she fraudulently recorded that the vaccine had been given to a 15-year-old boy who attended a medical practice in St James with his father last month.
It was alleged she inserted a needle into the teenager’s arm but failed to administer the vaccine.
At the time, police said the syringe with the vaccine still inside was disposed of, with a false entry made on the medical records that it had been given by another staff member.
When she was charged, Ms Benz was taken into custody and during an application for bail, the police prosecutor said it was set to be alleged that she had asked to work at the clinic to administer the vaccine to family and friends.
The Perth Magistrates Court was told up to 25 people attended the practice and specifically asked to see Ms Benz, prompting the clinic’s owner to become concerned.
The court heard that as a result, he had stayed and observed Ms Benz’s consultation with the 15-year-old, and he observed her filling a syringe with the vaccine and inserting it into the boy’s arm but not depressing it.
Ms Benz was granted bail but today, when she made her second appearance in court, the police prosecutor said the charge was being withdrawn.
No reason was given to the court.
Ms Benz was awarded $1,500 to cover her legal costs, including her application for bail, before being told she was free to go.
She made no comment as she left the court.