Miami nurse sentenced to 1 year, 1 day in prison over threats to kill Harris

A Miami nurse who used to work at Jackson Memorial Hospital was sentenced to 12 months and a day in prison on Tuesday over threats to kill Vice President Kamala Harris.

MIAMI – A nurse who pled guilty to a six-count indictment charging her with making threats to kill Vice President Kamala Harris was sentenced to 12 months and a day in prison with time served on Tuesday in federal court.

Niviane Petit Phelps, 39, has been in jail for about seven months. Attorney Scott Saul, who represented Phelps, said the former Jackson Memorial Hospital nurse was a victim of domestic violence and her mental health had suffered.

“He was physically abusive, very manipulative. She was taking every dime she made and sending it to his commissary,” Saul said. “I definitely think he was filling her head with ideas.”

Phelps admitted that in February, she sent her husband, who was in prison, 30-second video clips. The videos showed Phelps screaming curse words, saying that she had accepted $53,000 to carry out the “hit” against Harris within 50 days. Phelps also sent a photograph of herself holding a firearm at a gun range. 

Two days after sending the videos and photo, Phelps applied for a concealed weapon permit. 

“I think if she was truly dangerous she would have taken different steps to carry things out,” Saul said adding, “You go 39 years without getting arrested. You maintain a job for 20 years. You raise three kids. She is on her own. It’s like what I said in court, she deserves redemption.”

After her release, she will be on probation. The extra day in her sentencing allows for regular mental health evaluations.


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The Emmy Award-winning journalist joined the Local 10 News team in 2013. She wrote for the Miami Herald for more than 9 years and won a Green Eyeshade Award.