Woman Involved in ‘Landmark’ AIDS Case Could Return to Jail for Probation Violation
The Florida State Attorney's Office on Wednesday said it will seek the "harshest possible sentence" stemming from parole violation charges for Naomi Morrison, an HIV-positive woman who transmitted HIV to an elderly man when she bit him during a robbery attempt in 1994, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports. The "landmark" case was the first documented instance of HIV transmission through a human bite. Morrison was released in January 2001 after serving almost seven years in prison for the attack and has been arrested on misdemeanor drug possession and solicitation charges since her release. She is also charged with violating her parole by failing to report to her parole officer and moving without notifying the parole authorities. State Attorney's Office spokesperson Michael Edmondson said that the state will ask that Morrison, who was to plead guilty to the probation charges on Wednesday but had her hearing postponed until April 18, receive the maximum eight-year sentence. Prosecutor Craig Williams said the sentence was warranted because Morrison knew she had HIV but admitted to soliciting to commit prostitution. The State Attorney's Office also said it was considering pressing criminal charges against Morrison in the 1997 AIDS-related pneumonia death of Elmer Hutto, the man she infected in 1994. Morrison's attorney, Assistant Public Defender Scott Reiter, said his client wants to enter a treatment center for women with HIV (Burstein, South Florida Sun-Sentinel, 3/28).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.