Local News

Investigation Continues Into Murder Of Raleigh Nursing Student

Posted February 4, 2003

— Raleigh police are still trying to solve the murder of a nursing student who was found in the woods near Dorothea Dix Hospital Wednesday.

In a separate case, hospital police charged the victim's husband with raping a patient there. Investigators aren't saying whether they think the cases are related.

Daniel Lang, the husband of murder victim Shirley Lang, made his first appearance in Wake County Court on Monday on six sex-abuse charges. According to investigators, Lang, a former health technician at Dorothea Dix Hospital, had sex with a mentally ill patient.

"I think that Mr. Lang was an aberration," said Paula Bird, director of nursing at Dix. "This has never happened in the history of this hospital before.

"Mr. Lang was a good employee. It was not expected. I'm personally in shock that this could happen to one of our patients."

Police found Shirley Lang's body in a wooded area just across the street from the Dix campus.

Police aren't calling Daniel Lang a suspect in his wife's murder. But they're also not ruling him out.

According to Lt. Chris Morgan, the entire resources of the Raleigh Police Department and the Major Crimes Task Force have been focused on this case.

Police say Shirley Lang was a dedicated nursing student at Wake Tech who was doing her clinical rotation at Dix. Neighbors of the Langs in their quiet East Raleigh neighborhood said they are devastated by the recent events.

Investigators hope they can outsmart the suspect and clear the case. Administrators at Dix, meanwhile, say they are reviewing policies and procedures regarding hiring and patient-staff contact.


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