The protection lawyer for an Ohio physician accused of overprescribing ache medicine to a number of sufferers close to loss of life requested for a mistrial within the case Monday, saying sure remarks from prosecutors throughout closing arguments implied the protection has to satisfy a burden of proof.
Defense lawyer Jose Baez argued prosecutors have the burden to show guilt and the protection doesn’t should show something.
The defendant, William Husel, faces 14 counts of homicide associated to the allegations he prescribed the opioid fentanyl in doses “designed to hasten the death of the patients that were being treated,” prosecutors stated when Husel was indicted in June 2019. He was initially indicted on 25 counts of homicide, however in January – a few month earlier than the trial started – 11 of the 25 counts in opposition to him had been dismissed. Husel has pleaded not responsible.
Husel labored at Mount Carmel Health System in Columbus. He was fired December 5, 2018. According to the indictment, the affected person deaths befell between February 2015 and November 2018.
In arguing for a mistrial, Baez stated prosecutors requested throughout Monday’s closing arguments why the protection didn’t put sure witnesses on the stand and why the protection didn’t ask their knowledgeable witnesses a specific query. Prosecutors additionally instructed the jury that “no one in the world is giving these doses,” referring to the fentanyl on the middle of the case, when there was no proof on that situation, Baez stated.
The prosecution stated their closing arguments had been correct, and Judge Michael Holbrook will rule on the request for a mistrial Tuesday morning earlier than jury deliberations are set to start.
Prosecutors spent greater than two hours presenting their closing Monday, arguing, partially, that “it is murder to kill a dying person.”
Assistant Franklin County prosecutor David Zeyen instructed the jury Husel had the “specific intention” to trigger the deaths of all 14 sufferers.
“You have to get into his mind,” Zeyen stated. “You have to figure it out.”
Zeyen instructed jurors that even when the sufferers’ underlying medical situations additionally triggered the deaths, if the fentanyl “hastened the deaths”, Husel is accountable.
Zeyen lined up a protracted row of fentanyl bottles for the jury to see as he referenced the testimony of witnesses describing sufferers’ medical situations. He stated every affected person was completely different however many got the identical quantities of the medication.
Several sufferers had been mind broken, Zeyen instructed the jury, however as an alternative of giving them much less medicine as a result of they wouldn’t have the ability to really feel the ache, bigger doses had been ordered by Husel.
Experts for the prosecution testified that nobody else within the area of consolation care medication is giving related quantities of fentanyl.
“No literature supports this,” Zeyen argued.
Three different ICU physicians at Mt. Carmel West – the place Husel practiced – testified they used morphine for ache fairly than fentanyl, and the morphine was given in small doses at designated intervals.
Baez, the protection lawyer, argued prosecutors had not confirmed past an affordable doubt that the doses really hastened the sufferers’ deaths or that Husel purposely supposed to kill the sufferers.
He criticized the prosecutors’ case, saying, “Things that were fed to you that were just not true. Completely contradicted by the records. That’s not what this process is for.”
Baez argued to the jury that the police initially didn’t perform a good and neutral investigation.
He accused police of relying too closely on the hospital’s inside investigation and argued prosecutors didn’t ask when sufferers stopped respiration, why that they had respiratory melancholy after which their coronary heart stopped beating.
“William Husel is sitting here now because they didn’t do that,” he stated.
Husel by no means tried to cover the quantity of fentanyl he was giving sufferers, Baez argued. “You do something wrong you try to hide it,” he instructed the jury. “That shows his intent right there.”
Baez additionally argued either side agree there are not any most doses for fentanyl utilized in consolation care medication, and went by means of all 14 sufferers outlining measures Husel carried out to avoid wasting their lives.
The nurses who labored alongside Husel had been a very powerful witnesses of this trial, he stated, including that all of them misplaced their jobs and most are now not nurses.
“You would think they would be really angry at William Husel,” however all of them spoke extraordinarily extremely of him as a doctor, Baez stated.
“They were there. We were not,” he stated.