May 9, 1995 in Nation/World

Kevorkian Ignores Michigan Court Ruling Assists Terminally Ill Minister Commit Suicide

New York Times
 
Tags:ethics

Dr. Jack Kevorkian stood by on Monday as a terminally man killed himself, exactly two weeks after the Supreme Court refused to consider the doctor’s appeal of a Michigan court’s ruling that assisted suicide is a crime. It was the 22nd time that Kevorkian has assisted in a suicide.

Early on Monday morning, the man, the Rev. John E. Evans, a Unitarian minister with a terminal lung disease, pulmonary fibrosis, committed suicide in his home in Royal Oak, a northern suburb of Detroit, said Kevorkian’s lawyer, Geoffrey Fieger. Fieger declined to say how Evans killed himself.

The police and the Oakland County prosecutor’s office were investigating the death, which they initially attributed to natural causes. The Royal Oak police said they were called to Evans’ home just after 7 a.m. by his wife, who told them her husband, who was 78, had passed away.

The police officers said they heard that the death was an assisted suicide after Fieger called a news conference at 11:30 a.m.

In a statement released by Fieger, Evans’ widow, Jan Evans-Tiller, said: “My husband was a courageous man who had the courage to do what is right. Dr. Kevorkian is such a person also.”

Kevorkian’s participation in the suicide was a clear rejection of recent court rulings and a virtual challenge to his chief legal nemesis, the Oakland County prosecutor, Richard Thompson.


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