Arlington hospital nurse indicted on charge of sexually assaulting patient

Gerald Thomas Cagle, 63, in a mugshot after his Oct. 31 arrest by Arlington police.
Gerald Thomas Cagle, 63, in a mugshot after his Oct. 31 arrest by Arlington police. Arlington Police Department

A male nurse with a record of license revocations has been indicted by a Tarrant County grand jury on a charge of sexually assaulting a female patient at Medical Center of Arlington in March 2014.

Arlington police arrested Gerald Thomas Cagle, 63, at an Arlington home on Oct. 31 after an investigation by Detective Jacklyn Donalson concluded that Cagle assaulted the woman during an examination.

A Tarrant County prosecutor and Cagle’s attorney were scheduled to meet Tuesday to discuss the case. Cagle was indicted last month.

Donalson declined to comment because Cagle, who records show first got his license in 1993, hasn’t been convicted.

An official with Medical Center of Arlington said the hospital worked closely with Arlington police on the case.

“Upon learning of the allegations, we immediately removed the individual from working in our facility and he has not worked at the hospital since,” Outreach Services manager Deborah R. Su wrote in an email to the Star-Telegram.

Tarrant County prosecutor Ashlea Deener and Dallas defense attorney Tom Pappas declined to comment.

An arrest warrant affidavit obtained by the Star-Telegram provides details of the charge.

The victim, given the pseudonym “Nicole Brown,” told police that on March 25 she was having chest pains on her way to work, so she drove to the hospital, 3301 Matlock Road.

In an exam room, Cagle told her to undress and gave her a gown, the affidavit states.

“Gerry [Cagle] told her to take off her clothes and leave on her panties,” the affidavit states. “Gerry took off Nicole’s shoes and slid her shirt over her head. Gerry told Nicole she needed to take off her bra and he helped her take it off.”

A female doctor subsequently entered the room and told the woman that they were going to do an electrocardiogram and X-ray, the affidavit states.

After the doctor left, Cagle gave the woman a shot in the buttocks, followed by a 30-second rub, the affidavit states. He then tapped her butt, the affidavit states.

She found it strange, according to the document.

After the tests, Cagle told her that her symptoms could be due to a urinary tract infection and that he needed to collect a sample by inserting a catheter.

“Gerry told Nicole to remove her panties and he took them off before she could sit up to take them off herself,” the affidavit says.

Cagle subsequently told the woman that the best treatment for her final diagnosis of muscle spasms was a massage, and he asked if she ever had one, according to the document.

“Gerry stood behind Nicole and rubbed her shoulders. He then stood beside her, reached across her body, and rubbed her back and side. This lasted for two or three minutes,” the affidavit says.

On the way home Brown called her mom, the hospital and then the police.

The catheter issue

In a May 9 interview at the Arlington police station, Cagle told detectives that he usually has a female nurse insert catheters in female patients “because of the possibility of false allegations.”

He went on to tell the detective that he “didn’t ask a female nurse in this case because he was made fun of two weeks before when he asked someone to help him.”

He said that after looking around for a female nurse he decided to go ahead with the catheter on his own.

According to Cagle’s notes, that morning he “obtained [an] in and out cath[eter] for urine and to lab,” but records show that a doctor never ordered the urine sample, according to the affidavit.

The doctor later told police that she didn’t think one was needed, according to the affidavit.

“The lab was unable to confirm if they received a urine sample, because it would have been destroyed if tests were not requested,” the affidavit states.

The woman also told police that she had been catheterized before and that she was “positive he did not use one.”

But Cagle said that not only did he use one but that he also had great difficulty inserting it.

After he later realized that the test was never ordered, he “threw the sample away,” he told detectives.

Video footage obtained by Donalson through a grand jury subpoena shows that Cagle was in the room with the woman for 16 minutes.

Cagle posted $50,000 bail from the Arlington Jail on the same day of his arrest, records show.

Still has license

Cagle had been with the hospital for a short period as a contract worker for Staff Quest, an independent medical-staffing firm. Staff Quest could not be reached for comment.

To date he still has his nursing license, said Bruce Holter, a spokesman for the Texas Board of Nursing.

However, the board has filed an accusation against Cagle stating that while he was assigned to the emergency department at Medical Center of Arlington, he “inappropriately performed an in-and-out catheterization” on a woman without a physician’s order.

The charge states that he could have caused her injury or infection. It does not address the sexual assault allegation.

“The current disciplinary action against Mr. Cagle is still pending and until final disciplinary action is taken, if any, his license remains current,” Holter wrote in an email. “Until due process has run its course in this matter, it is not possible to state what the final outcome of the formal charges will be.”

If disciplinary action is taken, Cagle faces revocation of his license and a $1,200 fine.

In trouble before

It wouldn’t be the first time Cagle had his nursing license revoked.

It has happened twice dating to a 2007 case while he was the relief charge nurse at an intensive care unit at the now-closed Renaissance Hospital in Terrell.

Cagle assigned the care of a heart attack patient to a licensed vocational nurse who should not have cared for a patient that critical, Texas Board of Nursing records say.

Cagle did not complete an initial admission assessment for the patient as required by the facility, records state. He also failed to communicate the physician’s telephone order for the right amount of potassium chloride to be given to the patient inravenously. The patient died within a few hours, reports state.

And in 2010, his license was revoked after he failed to have his employer at Plaza Medical Center of Fort Worth submit a form and periodic reports of his nursing capability that were required under an agreement he signed after the first time he got in trouble, documents state.

His license was reinstated again in 2013.

Monica S. Nagy, 817-390-7792