A nurse has been accused of setting one of his coworkers on fire and attacking her with a wrench. Police later arrived to find the accused dead from an apparent suicide.
The authorities started looking for 31-year-old Nicholas Pagano, a contracted agency nurse, on Monday after he allegedly set fire to a break room at Hackensack University Medical Center.
When authorities arrived around 5:15 a.m., they discovered a victim with third-degree burns to her upper body, face, and hands, as well as a cut to her head that required stitches.
She was initially treated at the hospital but was later transferred to another facility, where she remained critical but stable on Wednesday.
According to sources, Pagano allegedly attacked his coworker with a culinary torch and a wrench before fleeing the scene on foot. In connection with the attack, he was wanted on attempted murder and aggravated arson charges.
Prosecutors announced on Tuesday that Pagano was found dead in Waterford Township from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.
They believe he used his brother’s gun to commit his final act.
Nobody saw what happened before the scuffle, and a motive has yet to be determined.
Pagano was not a hospital employee but had been working as a contracted nurse at Hackensack University Medical Center since November.
According to authorities, he passed the required background check to work at the medical facility.