PLEASE NOTE: To protect your safety in response to the threats of COVID-19, we are offering our clients the ability to meet with us via telephone, video conference, or FaceTime. Please call our office to discuss your options.
Cok Kinzler PLLP

Doctor charged with murder faces medical malpractice claim

When does a death resulting from medical malpractice cross the line to a criminal charge of murder? Montana residents may have heard that an osteopathic surgeon in another state is currently facing multiple murder charges as well as at least one medical malpractice lawsuit for making severe medication errors.

The surgeon has been charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of nine patients. He has also been charged with the illegal distribution of drugs, resulting from allegedly excessive amounts of controlled substances he prescribed. The medications included muscle relaxers, painkillers and anxiety medications. 

Eight of his patients overdosed on the medications. The ninth was killed in a car accident related to prescription drug use.

Following the doctor’s arrest on the criminal charges, the husband of one patient has filed a medical malpractice suit against the doctor, his physician assistant and a clinic. The suit alleges that the doctor prescribed about 600 pills to the patient leading to her death just two days later of drug toxicity. 

Medical malpractice can take many forms. A failure to diagnose an illness that later claims the life of a patient could support a medical malpractice claim in some cases. Mistakes can also happen during a surgical procedure. But, while tragic, these errors rarely rise to a level that meets the legal standards for a murder charge.

Regardless of whether a medical error is prosecuted as a crime,

victims of medical malpractice, and their families, may have the right to file claims against their doctors to recover medical expenses and damages that were incurred as a result of the malpractice. 

Source: The Oklahoman, "Former doctor accused of murder now faces malpractice suit in Oklahoma,” Matt Dinger, Feb. 27, 2014

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

How Can We Help? Set Up Your free Consultation.

Call us at 800-677-6263 or use our contact form to arrange a free consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney.

How Can We Help? Set Up Your free Consultation.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

35 North Bozeman Avenue
Bozeman, MT 59715

Toll Free: 800-677-6263
Fax: 406-587-9465
Map & Directions