Former N.C. paramedic, accused of poisoning wife in 2018, arrested for allegedly setting fire inside medical helicopter mid-flight

Former N.C. paramedic, accused of poisoning wife in 2018, arrested for allegedly setting fire inside medical helicopter mid-flight
According to the Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office inmate search, Joshua Hunsucker was arrested on Monday, accused of felony burning personal property. The website shows his currently unsecured bond at $50,000. (Source: Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office)

GASTON COUNTY, N.C. (WBTV) - A former paramedic who is accused of poisoning his wife in 2018 was just arrested again for allegedly setting a fire inside a medical helicopter mid-flight in Charlotte in 2019.

According to the Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office inmate search, Joshua Hunsucker was arrested on Monday on charges of felony burning personal property. The website shows his currently unsecured bond at $50,000.

A police report lists allegations that on Nov. 26, 2019, Hunsucker intentionally set a piece of medical equipment on fire inside the helicopter while in flight. The report says the helicopter was forced to land interfering with flight operations.

WBTV preciously reported on an incident the same date where a medical helicopter made an emergency landing in Charlotte after a piece of equipment caught fire.

On March 29, 2021, CMPD says Hunsucker turned himself into the Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office upon learning of the charges. The investigation into this case is active and ongoing.

CMPD says the case has been under continued investigation during the past year and four months, but probable cause for Hunsucker’s arrest had not been established until recently before the warrant had been issued.

In 2020, a probable cause affidavit signed by a special agent from the North Carolina Department of Insurance outlined a portion of the investigation into the death of a Gaston County woman.

Police believe Stacy Hunsucker was poisoned by her husband, Joshua Hunsucker, in September of 2018.

Joshua Hunsucker, a former paramedic with Atrium Health, is believed to have given his wife doses of tetrahydrozoline, a product commonly found in eye drops and which can cause heart stoppages. Officials say Hunsucker was terminated by Atrium, effective Friday, Dec. 20, 2019.

Joshua Hunsucker has been charged with first-degree murder in his wife’s death. He was jailed under a $1.5 million bond, but was able to post bond.

In 2020, WBTV obtained a copy of a probable cause affidavit that details a portion of the investigation into Stacy Hunsucker’s death and Joshua Hunsucker’s actions. The affidavit is signed by a special agent from the North Carolina Department of Insurance.

The affidavit states that Joshua Hunsucker told at least four different versions as to what he was doing before he found his wife black and blue back in September of 2018.

The document notes that that a blood sample from Stacy Hunsucker that was sent to a lab for testing showed high level of Tetrahydrozoline. It explains that the decongestant is found in eye drops and nasal spray and can cause vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, seizing and cardiac arrest if its ingested orally.

The affidavit also states that Joshua Hunsucker refused to allow an autopsy to be performed on his wife, saying he didn’t want his wife ‘cut up’ even though she’s an organ donor. A

Additionally, the document explains that Joshua Hunsucker was a flight paramedic for Medcenter Air where his training and experience would provide an understanding of various types of medication and how that medication could react with the body.

The documents also note that Stacy Hunsucker’s mother, Suzie Robinson, sent a referral to the North Carolina Department of Insurance after becoming aware of a relationship Joshua Hunsucker had with a girlfriend prior to Stacy’s death.

The affidavit also states Joshua Hunsucker applied for his wife’s life insurance benefits worth $250,000 two days after Stacy Hunsucker died.

During a March 2020 court hearing, it was determined that Joshua Hunsucker will not face the death penalty.

Atrium Health provided the below release on Hunsucker’s most recent arrest.

“Nothing is more important for our emergency medical crews than safety – especially for those who are in flight. If what Mr. Hunsucker is charged with is true, it is unfathomable to us what may have possessed him to endanger himself and others in such a way. We are extremely thankful that our pilot was able to land safely and that no-one was injured and especially grateful that there were no patients on board at the time. We will be cooperating fully with law enforcement officials as the case proceeds.,” the statement read.

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