A Florida woman who previously ran for the State House admitted she lied about being a doctor and treating victims the night of the Pulse shooting.
Elizabeth McCarthy told an investigator with the Florida Department of Health (DOH) on 9 July that she was not a medical doctor. This admission went against statements she made at earlier political events.
‘It is a false statement. I just made it up,’ she said.
The Health Department is charging McCarthy, 50, with lying about being a doctor, which violates state law. According to Florida Politics, they also served her a cease and desist letter prohibiting her from telling anyone else she is a doctor.
She also faces a $1,000 fine plus other various costs, bringing the total to $3,094.95.
What did she say about Pulse?
McCarthy made numerous comments about being doctor — including working the night of the Pulse nightclub massacre — while running for public office.
At two events organized by Rep. Darren Soto (D), she talked about Pulse, one of the deadliest mass shootings in US history.
On 12 June 2016, a man opened fire in the gay nightclub Pulse. He killed 49 people and wounded 53 others.
In McCarthy’s statements, she claimed she removed 77 bullets from 32 different Pulse victims.
Then dropped out of the Florida race
When Florida Politics reported they could not confirm these claims in June, authorities launched an investigation.
DOH Medical Quality Assurance Investigator Rafael B. Aponte questioned McCarthy, which is when she admitted to lying.
When pressed why she lied, McCarthy responded: ‘I wanted to be somebody in the community, and I’m sorry. I’m sorry that I gave any impersonation. I knew it was wrong and I should have stopped — by no means did I ever mean to put anybody in jeopardy.’
Previously in June, McCarthy claimed the implications were part of an effort to ‘smear’ her campaign.
She had been running for the Florida House of Representatives in District 28. She has since ended her campaign.
McCarthy did not respond to requests for comments.