Bryan Neal Harris watched rape, torture and murder while working at the Hill Crest Mental Health Unit in Redditch, Worcestershire
A mental health nurse who browsed the web for torture techniques and toured Nazi death camp websites while on duty has been struck off the nursing register.
Bryan Neal Harris also researched the history of Hitler’s infamous SS henchmen, viewed clips of fatal motor racing accidents and accessed sites about the torture, murder and rape of prisoners.
He looked at the sites while working at the Hill Crest Mental Health Unit in Redditch, Worcestershire – in the grounds of the town’s Alexandra Hospital.
The Nursing and Midwifery Council has issued the order to strike him off, meaning he can never work in the profession again.
They found that vulnerable patients had “suffered” because of the experienced nurse’s “irresponsible” behaviour and misconduct.
Harris, who has since fled to South Africa, accessed the vile websites between July 2, 2010 and January 12, 2011 on a work computer at the unit’s Hillcrest Ward, where he had been employed for 24 years.
A spokesman for Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust said: “We have very clear policies on the use of the internet and any member of staff who is found to be using it inappropriately or excessively will face disciplinary action.
“Cases like this are extremely rare for our Trust and the vast majority of our staff act in accordance with the policy and the guidelines provided.”
Harris was also found guilty of asking healthcare assistant Kirsten Buck to give patients emergency medication, despite her not being qualified to do so, during a two-and-a-half year period from February 2009. The panel heard that Harris had confessed to assessing whether patients needed emergency medication simply by “looking at them through a window” at an earlier disciplinary hearing.
Ms Buck also told the panel how Harris’s computer usage “made the shifts stressful as he did not attend to his other duties on the ward”.
Darren Levett, who is now the Acute Lead for Adult Mental Health at the Trust, retrieved Harris’s disturbing internet history during an investigation launched after a patient complained about his attitude and behaviour in January 2011.
He uncovered numerous sites relating to the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp, torture methods and instruments, the SS, abuse of prisoners, serious car accidents and trailers for gory horror films including Saw IV and Saw V. Harris then tried to pin the blame on two other colleagues, saying they had logged in under his name.
But Mr Levett told the NMC panel that staff members would be automatically logged off a computer once it had been inactive for two to five minutes, and anyone using the computer after that would have to log in with their own username and password.
Harris has 28 days to appeal the decision. He is said to be in South Africa and has not provided the NMC with a forwarding address.
The Hill Crest Mental Health Unit looks after adults suffering mental health issues, and offers an intensive recovery service, consultant psychiatry, psychology and help with eating disorders.
It has 18 in-patient beds and also offers out-patient consultation and counselling.