The acquittal of a Dutch doctor who drugged and euthanized a dementia patient against her will sparked outrage in the United States as assisted suicide bills spread.
On Wednesday, a Dutch court acquitted a doctor who admitted to administering lethal medication to a dementia patient with the help of her family. The 74-year-old woman had previously indicated her preference for euthanasia, but when she declined to follow through on those promises the doctor drugged her coffee and killed the woman as her family members restrained her. The Hague District Court ruled that the doctor, who was not named, had not violated the 2002 law that legalized euthanasia.
The acquittal comes just before Maine becomes the ninth state to legalize assisted suicide. Matthew Valliere, executive director of the anti-assisted suicide Patient Rights Action Fund, called the death a tragedy, adding that euthanasia laws are ripe for abuse. read more