Dr. Death's Suicide

Physician's Money Digest, June15 2004, Volume 11, Issue 11

Harold Shipman, MD, one of history'sdeadliest serial killers, hanged himselfin his prison cell earlier this year. After theBritish physician had been convicted ofmurdering 15 of his patients and sentencedto life in prison, an inquiry into hismedical practice turned up solid evidencethat he had in fact murdered as many as215 patients over a 20-year period. Thedoctor's string of killings finally came toan end when the attorney-daughter ofKathleen Grundy, his last victim, accusedhim of forging her mother's will to gainher estate worth $1.2 million. Acting onthose accusations, authorities startedlooking into Dr. Shipman's practice and,after exhuming Grundy's body, discoveredthat she had died from a fatal dose ofdiamorphine. Subsequent exhumationsuncovered further evidence that led to the55-year-old doctor's conviction.