Relentless Russian attacks pounded the last Ukrainian stronghold in the besieged city of Mariupol as a fighter apparently on the inside issued a video plea for help, saying defenders holed up in a giant steel plant "may have only a few days or hours left.”
Another attempt to evacuate civilians trapped in the pulverized port city failed Wednesday because of continued fighting, and the number of people fleeing the country topped 5 million.
Meanwhile, the Kremlin said it submitted a draft of its demands for ending the war, and the West raced to supply Ukraine with heavier weapons to counter the Russians' new drive to seize the industrial east.
With global tensions running high, Russia reported the first successful test launch of a new type of intercontinental ballistic missile, the Sarmat. President Vladimir Putin boasted that it can overcome any missile defense system and make those who threaten Russia “think twice." The head of the Russian state aerospace agency called the launch out of northern Russia “a present to NATO.”
The Pentagon described the test as “routine” and said it wasn't considered a threat.
On the battlefield, Ukraine said Moscow continued to mount assaults across the east, probing for weak points in Ukrainian defensive lines. Russia said it launched hundreds of missile and air attacks on targets that included concentrations of troops and vehicles.
The Kremlin's stated goal is the capture of the Donbas, the mostly Russian-speaking eastern region that is home to coal mines, metal plants and heavy-equipment factories. Detaching it would give Putin a badly needed victory two months into the war, after the botched attempt to storm the capital, Kyiv.
In a nationwide video address, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the Russians were not “abandoning their attempts to score at least some victory by launching a new, large-scale offensive.”
The Luhansk governor said Russian forces now control 80% of his region, which is one of two that make up the Donbas. Before Russia invaded on Feb. 24, the Kyiv government controlled 60% of the Luhansk region.
Gov. Serhiy Haidai said the Russians, after seizing the small city of Kreminna, are now threatening the cities of Rubizhne and Popasna. He urged all residents to evacuate immediately.
“The occupiers control only parts of these cities, unable to break through to the centers,” Haidai said on the messaging app Telegram.
Analysts have said the offensive in the east could become a war of attrition as Russia faces Ukraine's most experienced, battle-hardened troops, who have fought pro-Moscow separatists in the Donbas for eight years.
Russia said it presented Ukraine with a draft document outlining its demands for ending the conflict — days after Putin said the talks were at a “dead end.”
Zelenskyy said he had not seen or heard of the proposal, though one of his top advisers said the Ukrainian side was reviewing it.
Moscow has long demanded Ukraine drop any bid to join NATO. Ukraine has said it would agree to that in return for security guarantees from other countries. Other sources of tension include the status of both the Crimean Peninsula, seized by Moscow in 2014, and eastern Ukraine, where the separatists have declared independent republics recognized by Russia.
In devastated Mariupol, Ukraine said the Russians dropped heavy bombs to flatten what was left of the sprawling Azovstal steel plant, believed to be the city's last pocket of resistance.
A few thousand Ukrainian troops, by the Russians’ estimate, remained in the plant and its labyrinth of tunnels and bunkers spread out across about 11 square kilometers (4 square miles). Zelenskyy said about 1,000 civilians were also trapped.
A Ukrainian apparently in the plant posted a Facebook video urging world leaders to help evacuate people from the plant, saying, "We have more than 500 wounded soldiers and hundreds of civilians with us, including women and children.”
The officer identified himself as Serhiy Volynskyy of the 36th Marine Brigade and warned: “This may be our last appeal. We may have only a few days or hours left." The authenticity of the video could not be independently verified.
The Russian side issued a new ultimatum to the defenders to surrender, but the Ukrainians have ignored all previous demands.
More than 100,000 people overall were believed trapped in Mariupol with little if any food, water, medicine or heat. The city's pre-war population was 400,000.
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A Montrealer is among the five victims of a plane crash in Haiti.
Paule Robitaille, a member of the Quebec Liberal Party, says she learned of the death of Gamaniel Valcin on Wednesday.
Her message was published after the announcement of the crash of a small plane in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince.
The plane was headed to the southern coastal city of Jacmel when it tried to land in the community of Carrefour and hit a truck transporting soda bottles.
Pierre Belamy Samedi, a police commissioner for that region, said a total of five people were aboard the plane.
Haiti’s National Civil Aviation Office identified the plane as a Cessna 207 but no further details were immediately available.
Prime Minister Ariel Henry tweeted that he was saddened by the crash and offered his sympathies to the relatives of those who died.
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South Carolina’s highest court on Wednesday issued a temporary stay blocking the state from carrying out what was set to be its first-ever firing squad execution.
The order by the state Supreme Court puts on hold at least temporarily the planned April 29 execution of Richard Bernard Moore, who drew the death sentence for the 1999 killing of convenience store clerk James Mahoney in Spartanburg. The last execution by firing squad in the U.S. was in 2010.
The court said in issuing the temporary stay that it would release a more detailed order later.
Attorneys for the 57-year-old inmate had sought a stay, citing pending litigation in another court challenging the constitutionality of South Carolina’s execution methods, which also include the electric chair. Moore’s lawyers also wanted time to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to review whether Moore’s sentence was proportionate to his crime.
It has been more than a decade since the last firing squad execution in the U.S. The state of Utah carried out all three such executions in the nation since 1976, according to the Washington-based nonprofit Death Penalty Information Center. The most recent was in 2010, when Ronnie Lee Gardner faced a five-person squad.
South Carolina’s last execution was in 2011. State officials have attributed a decadelong hiatus in executions to an inability to secure lethal injection drugs after the state’s last batch expired in 2013. Efforts to contact manufacturers and compounding pharmacies have proved unfruitful, Corrections Department officials have repeatedly said.
A 2021 law intended to solve that problem made the electric chair the default execution method instead of lethal injection, and also codified the firing squad as an alternative option for condemned inmates.
Moore’s execution date was set after corrections officials disclosed last month that they had completed renovations on the state’s death chamber in Columbia to accommodate the firing squad and also developed new execution protocols.
Though Moore elected execution by firing squad earlier this month, he maintained in a written statement that he was forced to make a decision by a deadline set by state law and still found both options unconstitutional.
A state judge has agreed to examine a legal challenge brought by Moore and three other death row inmates who have mostly exhausted their appeals. Their lawyers argue that both electrocution and the firing squad are “barbaric” methods of killing. The prisoners’ attorneys also want the judge to closely examine prisons officials’ claims that they can’t get hold of lethal injection drugs, citing executions by that method carried out by other states and the federal government in recent years.
Moore is also separately asking a federal judge to consider whether the firing squad and the electric chair are cruel and unusual.
South Carolina is one of eight states that still use the electric chair and one of four — including Mississippi, Oklahoma and Utah — to allow a firing squad, per the Death Penalty Information Center.
Moore has spent more than two decades on death row after he was convicted in 2001 in the fatal shooting of convenience store clerk James Mahoney. Prosecutors said at his trial that he entered Nikki’s Speedy Mart in Spartanburg looking for money to support his cocaine habit. He then got into a dispute with Mahoney, who drew a pistol that Moore wrestled away from him. Mahoney pulled a second gun, and a gunfight ensued, with Mahoney shooting Moore in the arm and Moore shooting Mahoney in the chest.
Moore’s lawyers have said Moore couldn’t have intended to kill someone when he entered the store because he didn’t bring a gun with him.
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A rocket was fired into southern Israel from the Gaza Strip late Wednesday, the Israeli military said, in the second such attack this week as Mideast tensions have soared over violence in Jerusalem.
It was not immediately clear if there were any casualties or damage, and no one claimed the strike.
The Islamic militant group Hamas that rules Gaza had issued vague threats earlier Wednesday over a planned march through Jerusalem by Israeli ultra-nationalists. But Israeli police blocked roads and prevented the marchers from reaching dense Palestinian neighborhoods, after a similar event nearly a year ago helped trigger an Israel-Gaza war.
Police used parked trucks and barricades just outside the walls of the Old City to close the main road leading down to Damascus Gate, the epicenter of last year's unrest. After some pushing and shoving with police, the marchers rallied near the barricades, waving flags, singing and chanting.
Israeli police deployed in large numbers around the historic Old City, home to major religious sites for Jews, Christians and Muslims, out of concern that confrontations could further inflame an already tense situation during the Jewish holiday of Passover and the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
Tensions have surged in recent weeks after a series of deadly attacks inside Israel, followed by military operations in the occupied West Bank. On Monday, Palestinian militants fired a rocket from the Gaza Strip into Israel for the first time in months, and Israel responded with airstrikes.
The exchange followed days of clashes between Israeli police and Palestinians at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound, known to Jews as the Temple Mount.
The hilltop shrine in Jerusalem’s Old City is the third holiest in Islam, while for Jews it is their holiest site, where two temples stood in antiquity. It is the emotional ground zero for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and a flashpoint for previous rounds of violence.
Earlier on Wednesday, a small group of Palestinian protesters threw rocks at police while hundreds of Jewish visitors entered the flashpoint holy site.
Amateur video from the scene appeared to show police using sponge-tipped plastic projectiles intended to be non-lethal as the protesters barricaded themselves inside the mosque. Police said a firebomb thrown by one of the protesters set a carpet outside the mosque on fire, but it was quickly extinguished. No injuries were reported.
The Palestinian militant group Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip, said Wednesday ahead of the march that Israel would bear "full responsibility for the repercussions” if it allowed the marchers “to approach our holy sites,” without elaborating.
Itamar Ben Gvir, an ultra-nationalist lawmaker who frequently stages provocative visits to Palestinian areas, attended the rally and was greeted with cheers. He is a disciple of a radical rabbi whose violently anti-Arab ideology was once shunned in Israel but is now having a revival.
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said in a statement that he would bar Ben Gvir from going to Damascus Gate. “I don’t intend to allow petty politics to endanger human lives,” he said.
Last May, Palestinian militants in Gaza fired rockets toward Jerusalem as a much larger group of thousands of Israelis held a flag march to the Old City following weeks of protests and clashes in and around Al-Aqsa. Those events led to an 11-day war between Israel and Hamas.
Israeli nationalists stage such marches to try to assert sovereignty over east Jerusalem, which Israel seized in the 1967 Mideast war, along with the West Bank and Gaza, and annexed in a move not recognized internationally. The Palestinians seek an independent state in all three territories and consider east Jerusalem their capital.
Organizer Noam Nisan defended the march in an interview with Kan public radio before it was held, saying: “A Jew with a flag in Jerusalem is not a provocation."
He said the demonstration was a response to Palestinians pelting buses with stones just outside the Old City earlier this week. The attack happened near an entrance leading to the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, which is next to Al-Aqsa.
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Five people were found dead inside a Duluth, Minnesota, home on Wednesday, after police received a report of a male experiencing a mental health crisis, authorities said.
Duluth Police Chief Mike Tusken said police in nearby Hermantown got an initial request to check on someone in that city at about 11:30 a.m. Wednesday.
The investigation led them to contact Duluth police. Authorities eventually went to a Duluth home, where they found the bodies. Duluth is about 150 miles (241 kilometers) north of Minneapolis, on the shore of Lake Superior.
Tusken called it an “unimaginable tragedy," WDIO-TV reported. He said a dog was also found deceased.
In a news release, police said officers “obtained information that the subject had access to weapons" and several law enforcement agencies were called to assist. The area was searched before authorities went inside.
Police said it is believed that all of the deceased are related, but the nature of the relationship was not immediately released. Police also did not say how they died.
Police said they are investigating.
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The U.S. Capitol was briefly evacuated Wednesday evening after police identified an aircraft that they said posed "a probable threat” — but the plane was actually carrying members of the U.S. Army Golden Knights, who then parachuted into Nationals Park for a pregame demonstration.
The alert from the U.S. Capitol Police sent congressional staffers fleeing from the Capitol and legislative building around 6:30 p.m.
The incident suggested a stunning communications failure between the military and the Capitol Police, all the more remarkable because of Washington’s focus on improving security since the January 6, 2021, attack on the building by supporters of then-President Donald Trump.
Many who work on Capitol Hill have remained on edge more than a year after hundreds of pro-Trump rioters pushed their way past overwhelmed police officers, broke through windows and doors and ransacked the Capitol as Congress was voting to certify Joe Biden’s electoral win.
In Wednesday's incident, the aircraft, a twin-engine plane, took off from Joint Base Andrews in Maryland and had been circling inside heavily restricted airspace close to the Capitol when the alert was sent. Radar tracking data shows the plane, a De Havilland Twin Otter, remained clear of the prohibited airspace over the Capitol Building and other government complexes at all times. Air traffic control recordings capture the army plane coordinating its flight with the control tower at nearby Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.
Investigators were still working to determine why the event wasn't properly coordinated with law enforcement officials in Washington, two people familiar with the matter told The Associated Press. Multiple federal agencies began scrambling officials as the plane circled overhead.
The capital region is defended by several surface-to-air missile sites, as well as military aircrews on round-the-clock alert. It did not appear that any of those systems were scrambled.
Officials believe, based on a preliminary review, the pilot may have not properly reported taking off or had appropriate clearance, the people said. They were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity.
The plane landed back at Andrews around 6:50 p.m. after the parachuters descended into the middle of the field at Nationals Park. The stadium, home of the Washington Nationals baseball team, is a little more than a mile away from the U.S. Capitol.
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French President Emmanuel Macron tore into his far-right challenger Marine Le Pen in a television debate Wednesday for her ties to Russia and for wanting to strip Muslim women of their right to cover their heads in public, as he seeks the votes he needs to win another 5-year term.
In their only head-to-head confrontation before the electorate has its say in Sunday's winner-takes-all vote, Macron took the gloves off, arguing that his rival is unsuitable to lead the nuclear-armed and ethnically diverse European power and deal with Moscow. He sought to portray Le Pen as fundamentally untrustworthy, accusing her of dishonesty and of using faulty figures in her election promises.
He also said plans by the anti-immigration candidate to ban Muslim women from wearing headscarves in public would trigger “civil war” in the country that has the largest Muslim population in western Europe.
Le Pen, in turn, sought to appeal to voters struggling with surging prices amid the fallout of Russia's war in Ukraine. She said bringing down the cost of living would be her priority if elected as France's first woman president, portraying herself as the candidate for voters unable to make ends meet.
She said Macron's presidency had left the country deeply divided and she repeatedly referenced the so-called “yellow vest” protest movement that rocked his government before the COVID-19 pandemic with months of violent demonstrations against his economic policies.
“France needs to be stitched back together,” she said.
The debate drove home the yawning gulf in politics and character between the two candidates again vying for the presidency, five years after Macron handily beat Le Pen in 2017.
Polls suggest that Macron, a pro-European centrist, has a growing and significant lead over the anti-immigration nationalist, ahead of Sunday's vote. But the result is expected to be closer than five years ago and both candidates are angling for votes among electors who didn't support them in the election's first round on April 10.
“I am not like you,” Le Pen said as they clashed about France's energy needs.
“You are not like me," Macron said. “Thank you for the reminder.”
The French leader was particularly mordant in his criticism of a loan taken out by Le Pen's party in 2014 from a Russian-Czech bank. He said that debt meant that, if elected president, Le Pen's hands would be tied when dealing with the Kremlin.
“You are speaking to your banker when you speak of Russia, that's the problem," Macron charged in the evening primetime debate that was expected to be watched by millions.
“You made a choice which, obviously, acted as a constraint on your political position and does not make you independent on that issue. That is a fact,” Macron said.
Le Pen bristled at Macron’s suggestion that she is beholden to Russia. She described herself as “totally free.” She said her party is repaying the loan and called him “dishonest” for raising the issue.
Just hours before Wednesday's debate, imprisoned Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny had stepped into the French presidential campaign, urging voters to back Macron and alleging that Le Pen is too closely linked to Russia.
Macron emerged ahead from the April 10 first round. But Le Pen, who has gained ground this year by tapping anger over inflation, has significantly narrowed the gap in public support compared to 2017, when she lost with 34% of the vote to Macron's 66%.
Both candidates had prepared carefully for Wednesday's debate. But Le Pen made an inauspicious start: Having been picked to speak first, she started talking before the debate’s opening jingle had finished playing. Inaudible because of the music, she had to stop and start again. She apologized.
Once the jousting began, Macron quickly put Le Pen on the defensive. He zeroed in on her voting record as a lawmaker and questioned her grasp of economic figures.
In 2017, a similar debate struck a decisive blow to her campaign.
Both candidates need to broaden support before Sunday's vote. Many French, especially on the left, say they still don't know whether they will even go to the polls.
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The Justice Department is filing an appeal seeking to overturn a judge’s order that voided the federal mask mandate on planes and trains and in travel hubs, officials said Wednesday.
The notice came minutes after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention asked the Justice Department to appeal the decision handed down by a federal judge in Florida earlier this week.
A notice of appeal was filed in federal court in Tampa.
The CDC said in a statement Wednesday that it is its “continuing assessment that at this time an order requiring masking in the indoor transportation corridor remains necessary for the public health.”
It remained unclear whether the Biden administration would ask the appeals court to grant an emergency stay to immediately reimpose the mask mandate on public transit. An emergency stay of the lower court’s ruling would be a whiplash moment for travelers and transit workers. Most airlines and airports, many public transit systems and even ride-sharing company Uber lifted their mask-wearing requirements in the hours following Monday’s ruling.
A federal judge in Florida had struck down the national mask mandate for mass transit on Monday, leading airlines and airports to swiftly repeal their requirements that passengers wear face coverings. The Transportation Security Administration said Monday that it would it will no longer enforce the mask requirement.
The CDC had recently extended the mask mandate, which was set to expire Monday, until May 3 to allow more time to study the BA.2 omicron subvariant, which is now responsible for the vast majority of U.S. cases. But the court ruling Monday had put that decision on hold.
The CDC said it will continue to monitor public health conditions to determine if a mandate would remain necessary. It said it believes the mandate is “a lawful order, well within CDC’s legal authority to protect public health.”
Justice Department spokesman Anthony Coley said Wednesday night that the department was filing the appeal “in light of today’s assessment by the CDC that an order requiring masking in the transportation corridor remains necessary to protect the public health."
After a winter surge fueled by the omicron variant that prompted record hospitalizations, the U.S. has seen a significant drop in virus spread in recent months, leading most states and cities to drop mask mandates.
But several Northeast cities have seen a rise in hospitalizations in recent weeks, leading Philadelphia to bring back its mask mandate.
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A Texas judge on Wednesday pushed back the first jury trial over how much conspiracy theorist Alex Jones should pay the families of Sandy Hook victims after his Infowars company sought bankruptcy protection this week.
The delay ordered by state District Judge Maya Guerra Gamble comes days after Infowars and two other companies tied to Jones filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in Texas.
Jones has lost defamation lawsuits in Texas and Connecticut over his comments that the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre was a hoax. The first trial over how much he should pay the families had been scheduled to begin Monday in Austin, where Infowars is headquartered.
A new trial date has not been set.
Attorneys for Sandy Hook families have accused Jones of trying to hide millions of dollars in assets. Creditors listed in Infowars' bankruptcy filing include relatives of some of the 20 children and six educators killed in the 2012 school massacre in Connecticut.
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New Mexico workplace safety regulators on Wednesday issued the maximum possible fine against a film production company for firearms safety failures on the set of “Rust” where a cinematographer was fatally shot in October 2021 by actor and producer Alec Baldwin.
New Mexico’s Occupational Health and Safety Bureau said Rust Movie Productions must pay $139,793, and distributed a scathing narrative of safety failures in violation of standard industry protocols, including testimony that production managers took limited or no action to address two misfires on set prior to the fatal shooting. The bureau also documented gun safety complaints from crew members that went unheeded and said weapons specialists were not allowed to make decisions about additional safety training.
“What we had, based on our investigators' findings, was a set of obvious hazards to employees regarding the use of firearms and management’s failure to act upon those obvious hazards,” Bob Genoway, bureau chief for occupational safety, told The Associated Press.
At a ranch on the outskirts of Santa Fe on Oct. 21, 2021, Baldwin was pointing a gun at cinematographer Halyna Hutchins inside a small church during setup for the filming of a scene when it went off, killing Hutchins and wounding the director, Joel Souza.
Baldwin said in a December interview with ABC News that he was pointing the gun at Hutchins at her instruction on the New Mexico set of the Western film when it went off without his pulling the trigger.
The new occupational safety report confirms that a large-caliber revolver was handed to Baldwin by an assistant director, David Halls, without consulting with on-set weapons specialists during or after the gun was loaded. Regulators note that Halls also served as safety coordinator and that he was present and witnessed two accidental discharges of rifles on set, and that he and other managers who knew of the misfires took no investigative, corrective or disciplinary action. Crew members expressed surprise and discomfort.
“The Safety Coordinator was present on set and took no direct action to address safety concerns," the report states. “Management was provided with multiple opportunities to take corrective actions and chose not to do so. As a result of these failures, Director Joel Souza and cinematographer Halyna Hutchins were severely injured. Halyna Hutchins succumbed to her injuries.”
A spokesman for Rust Movie Productions did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment. An attorney for Baldwin was not immediately available.
James Kenney, secretary of the Environment Department that oversees occupational safety, said the agency dedicated 1,500 staff hours to its investigation, examined hundreds of documents and conducted at least a dozen interviews with cast and crew members.
Investigators found production managers placed tight limits on resources for a small team that controlled weapons on set and failed to address concerns about a shotgun left unattended twice.
Armorer Hannah Gutierrez Reed, the daughter of a sharpshooter and consultant to film productions, was limited to eight paid days as an armorer to oversee weapons and training, and was assigned otherwise to lighter duties as a props assistant. As her time as an armorer ran out, Gutierrez Reed warned a manager and was rebuffed.
Safety investigators also note that the production company did not develop a process to ensure live rounds of ammunition were not brought on set, in violation of industry safety protocols. Safety meetings were conducted, but not every day weapons were used, as required.
Kenney said the separate investigations into possible criminal charges are still underway.
He said his agency received no direct safety complaints from cast or crew prior to the fatal shooting, even though anonymity is offered.
“This tragedy, this loss of life, it could have been prevented, and we want people to say something,” he said.
Kenney was appointed in 2019 by Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, a staunch advocate for the film industry who increased a state cap in industry incentives shortly after taking office.
New Mexico competes with non-Hollywood production sites in states such as Georgia, Louisiana and New York. Film productions have flocked to New Mexico in recent years to seize on its diverse outdoor scenery, moderate costs and generous state incentives, including a rebate of between 25% and 35% of in-state spending for video production that helps filmmakers large and small underwrite their work.
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A jury on Wednesday acquitted an Ohio doctor accused of ordering excessive amounts of painkillers that led to multiple patient deaths at a Columbus-area hospital following a weeks-long trial.
Dr. William Husel was accused of ordering the drugs for 14 patients in the Mount Carmel Health System. He was indicted in cases that involved at least 500 micrograms of the powerful painkiller fentanyl.
Prosecutors said ordering such dosages for a non-surgical situation indicated an intent to end lives. Husel's attorneys argued he was providing comfort care for dying patients, not trying to kill them.
Franklin County Judge Michael Holbrook told jurors before the start of deliberations that they could also consider lesser charges of attempted murder. They deliberated for six days.
Husel would have faced a sentence of life in prison with parole eligibility in 15 years had he been found guilty of just one count of murder.
Prosecutors presented their case beginning Feb. 22 and put on 53 prosecution witnesses before resting on March 29. Those witnesses included medical experts who testified that Husel ordered up to 20 times as much fentanyl as was necessary to control pain.
Husel gave enough fentanyl to some patients to “kill an elephant,” testified Dr. Wes Ely, a physician and professor of medicine at Vanderbilt University.
Other prosecution witnesses included medical experts, Mount Carmel employees, investigators, and family members of all 14 patients.
By contrast, defense lawyers called a single witness — a Georgia anesthesiologist — to testify that Husel’s patients died from their medical conditions and not Husel’s actions. The defense rested on March 31 after one day.
The age of the patients who died ranged from 37 to 82. The first patient death was in May 2015. The last three died in November 2018.
During closing arguments April 11, David Zeyen, an assistant Franklin County prosecutor, told jurors that regardless of how close a patient is to death, it’s illegal to speed up the process.
Husel attorney Jose Baez said prosecutors hadn’t produced “a shred of evidence” to back up their claims.
Husel was fired by the Mount Carmel Health System. It concluded he had ordered excessive painkillers for about three dozen patients who died over several years. He was initially charged with 25 murder counts, but the judge agreed to dismiss 11 of those counts in January.
Husel’s colleagues who administered the medications weren’t criminally charged, but the hospital system said it fired 23 nurses, pharmacists and managers after its internal investigation and referred various employees to their respective state boards for possible disciplinary action.
Mount Carmel has reached settlements totaling more than $16.7 million over the deaths of at least 17 patients, with more lawsuits pending.
One patient, 82-year-old Melissa Penix, was given 2,000 micrograms of fentanyl and died a few minutes later. Dr. John Schweig of Tampa Bay General Hospital testified for the prosecution that Penix “definitely was not terminal, nor was continuing medical care futile.”
“She was a fighter,” said Penix’s daughter, Bev Leonhard, of Grove City, according to The Columbus Dispatch. “She didn’t deserve to die the way she did.”
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Police are investigating after a 23-year-old man was shot and killed in Seattle’s Chinatown-International District early Wednesday morning.
The Seattle Police Department said officers responded to the intersection of Fourth Avenue South and South Main Street around 12:30 a.m. Wednesday for reports of a shooting. When officers arrived, they found a man suffering from a gunshot wound, KING5 reported.
Officers and Seattle Fire Department medics attempted lifesaving measures on the man, but he was pronounced dead at the scene. A witness told police an altercation between “several people” happened before the shooting, according to a police blotter post.
Homicide detectives and members of the police department’s Crime Scene Investigation Unit responded to the scene.
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