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April 27, 2022

Doctor who Intentionally Overdosed Dying Patients Found Not Guilty of Murder

Ohio doctor William Husel was accused of purposefully killing at least 25 terminally ill patients by administering the drug, fentanyl. On April 20, a jury found him not guilty of killing 14 of them. The other 11 charges were dismissed earlier in Husel's trial.

The first 11 charges were dropped because the patients were administered fentanyl doses below 1,000 micrograms. Some of the other patients were given as much as 2,000 micrograms. After receiving one such dose, a patient died within five minutes.

During Husel's trial, Franklin County prosecutor David Zeyen argued that Husel should not be exempted from murder charges just because his patients were ill or dying. “If you hasten a person’s death, even if their death is as sure as the sun is going to rise in the morning, if you hasten that along, you have caused their death under the eyes of the law,” he said.

Over 50 witnesses, including doctors, nurses, and pharmacists who worked with Husel, testified for the prosecution. Only one person testified on Husel's behalf.

If found guilty, Husel would have faced life in prison.