JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A Jacksonville radiology technician who pleaded guilty to infecting patients at the Mayo Clinic to Hepatitis C learned his fate Monday in Federal Court.
Steven Buemel, 49, will go to jail for 30 years for his crimes -- resulting in one man's death. Our cameras weren't allowed in the courtroom, but Action News was there as two families struggled with heartbreak.
"I'm in shock right now," said Bonnie Ramsey, the daughter of one of five victims. "I don't really know how to react."
For Ramsey, it's a day she's waited for a very long time. On June 11 of 2010 she lost her father. Not to his medical condition that sent him to Mayo Clinic, but to the disease he contracted while he was there, Hepatitis C.
"I'm really torn right now because I have a lot of hatred and violence and that's not my soul that's not how I was raised," she said.
In Federal Court Monday, Buemel was sentenced to 30 years in prison for stealing Fentanyl from patients and swapping out their syringes for ones filled with saline contaminated with Hepatitis C, which Buemel says he never knew he had. It claimed William Ramsey's life.
"He's a Methodist minister and he's got thousands of parishioners all across the country and he's just a quirky silly mad that made everybody laugh."
And before a packed courtroom filled with emotional family members on both sides, Bonnie Ramsey made a plea to the judge. She wanted life in prison for a man she couldn't even bear to look at.
"I wanted to punch his face out. I really wanted to be violent and it was all I could do to restrain myself."
In the end, even the judge struggled giving the sentence; one that she says Buemel deserves for the "grave and deadly harm" he administered to patients in a trusted role in the hospital.
Buemel's wife was also in the courtroom, but she did not address the judge. Buemel himself did. He apologized to the families, saying he doesn't blame them for hating him. He hates himself for what he's done.