A 37-year-old nurse is accused of using the U.S. Postal Service to send poop and a bloody sanitary napkin to her husband’s ex-wife in Tennessee, according to federal court documents and media reports.
Della Marie Gibson Lathum was charged with two counts of sending biohazardous materials through the mail in a criminal complaint filed June 9. Lathum is from Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and worked as a nurse at Parkwest Medical Center in Knoxville, a postal inspector with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service said in the complaint.
A spokesperson for the hospital told media outlets Lathum no longer works there. The public defender appointed to represent Lathum declined to comment on her behalf Wednesday.
According to the complaint, Lathum sent a “soft package” on April 5 with feces inside. Four days later on April 9, the postal inspector said she mailed an envelope with a “human blood-stained feminine napkin.”
The feces belonged to a dog and the blood had been drawn from a patient at the hospital, WBIR reported.
Investigators interviewed Lathum at her workplace on April 19, where she first denied the allegations. The postal inspector said she later admitted to sending both of the packages.
Lathum reportedly told investigators she did it to show “the kids” the truth about her husband’s ex-wife.
“(Lathum) claimed her reason was (the ex-wife) was lazy, didn’t work and lived off the system,” the postal inspector said. “However, (Lathum) worked hard for everything she had.”
Court filings show Lathum was arrested June 11. In releasing her, the judge ordered Lathum to stay away from her husband’s ex-wife and her children and not to look for another job in the medical field.
The federal complaint follows several state charges of harassment, stalking and vandalism in Loudon County — where the ex-wife lives, WBIR reported.
Lathum was also accused of mailing harassing letters in April — including one using hospital property with the words “New Patient” stamped on the front, WATE reported, citing arrest warrants. Another letter mailed to the ex-wife’s minor daughter was reportedly disguised as a party invitation.
According to the TV station, the letter said “you are poor white trash faking a fancy life” and “your mom is broke and lazy and won’t pay her bills.”
Lathum was also accused of vandalizing the ex-wife’s car in a high school parking lot during a student banquet in March, causing more than $1,000 in damages, WATE reported.
She’s scheduled to appear in Loudon County court on July 28.