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Stats: 343 members, 4,728 Topics. Date: February 21, 2018, 12:05 pm

Neurosurgeon, Christopher Duntsch Convicted Of Botched Surgery Gets Life Sentence

TodayNewsReview / General / Health / Neurosurgeon, Christopher Duntsch Convicted Of Botched Surgery Gets Life Sentence 243 Views

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One-time neurosurgeon, Christopher Duntsch has been sentenced by 12-member jury to spend the remainder of his life behind bars Monday afternoon.

“This was a voice for Kellie,” said Don Martin, whose wife bled to death after one of those botched surgeries in 2012. His daughter, Caitlin Martin-Linduff, was relieved and tearful to know Duntsch will never hurt anyone again.

Duntsch, 44, is the first surgeon known to be sentenced to prison for a botched surgery. He was convicted of injury to an elderly person in the 2012 surgery on Mary Efurd that put her in a wheelchair. Duntsch was once an upcoming neurosurgeon. He made his mark, just not the one that he expected.

For weeks, jurors heard the accounts of patients who had been maimed or paralyzed in horrifically bungled surgeries. Kellie Martin and Floella Brown died. They also heard from doctors, nurses and other medical professionals who were shocked by what they saw Duntsch do during and after those surgeries.

“So why didn’t he stop?” Shughart said. “Because of greed. Because he owed people a lot of money. He wanted to live the high life and a neurosurgeon makes big bucks. Why didn’t he stop? Because he had no conscious. He doesn’t care what he has left in his wake.”

Jurors heard from Duntsch’s dad, mother, brother and a family friend who sought to appeal to the sympathies of the jury.

Duntsch grew up in a middle-class family. His mom was a teacher. His dad is a physical therapist. He was the eldest of four. They described him as the bright, precocious little boy who had taken care of a sick bird and loved dogs. They showed photos of him as a baby, as a toddler, and as a boy getting a soccer ball for Christmas. They talked about how he doted on his two little boys.

His father, Don Duntsch, spoke with pride about how his son had once been one of the top authorities on stem cells and had done ground-breaking cancer research. He said his son called him upset after several of the botched surgeries. He has no doubt that his son cared about his patients. In the end, he blamed pride for his son’s downfall. His father says he’s a humbled man. “He’s been devastated,” Don Duntsch said. “He has nothing. He’s lost everything.”

Melinda Lehmann, his defense attorney, said Duntsch was a scapegoat for a medical establishment that just kept hiring him and putting him in operating rooms. “Is it right for him go to away, to be thrown away when all of them profited?” she said of the hospitals that hired him. “They all have blood on their hands.”

www.9news.com/news/doctor-convicted-of-botched-surgery-gets-life-sentence/410853891

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