(NEW YORK) — A 33-year-old Pennsylvania woman could spend the rest of her life in prison after admitting to police that she repeatedly poisoned her boyfriend with Visine eye drops for more than three years in a bid for his attention.
Vickie Jo Mills of Ayr Township, Pa., was arrested Thursday and charged with 10 counts of aggravated assault, 10 counts of simple assault and 10 counts of reckless endangerment after she told authorities she slipped Visine eye drops into the drinking water of her 45-year-old boyfriend, Thurman Edgar Nesbitt III.
Mills, who has a child with Nesbitt, told Pennsylvania State Police she put Visine drops — medicinally used to “get the red out” of eyes — into his drinking water 10 to 12 times since June 2009.
Nesbitt had been sick for years with symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and blood pressure and breathing problems, according to police. His doctor, Dr. Harry Johnston, alerted authorities after detecting traces of tetrahydrozoline, a chemical found in eye drops, in Nesbitt’s blood tests.
A follow up test at the police station showed Nesbitt had 49 nanograms per milliliter of tetrahydrozoline in his system, categorized by medical experts as “an extremely high level,” according to the Record Herald newspaper.
Mills, according to an affidavit, “never meant to kill him [Nesbitt], only wanted him to pay more attention to her.”
Mills is being held in the Franklin County Jail on $75,000 bail. She appeared in Fulton County Court on Monday but was granted a continuance request made by her defense team. She will next appear in court on Sept. 17.
The 30 charges filed against her carry a maximum combined sentence of 240 years in jail and more than $300,000 in fines, according to the judge in the case, Magisterial District Judge Wendy Mellott.
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Jason Hanna and Deborah Feyerick, CNN
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