Friday, June 01, 2007

Dr. Kevorkian freed early

By P.J. Huffstutter, LA Times Staff Writer
6:36 PM PDT, June 1, 2007

CHICAGO -- Jack Kevorkian -- the infamous "Dr. Death" considered a remorseless murderer by some and a compassionate physician by others -- was released on parole Friday from a Michigan prison after serving eight years.

The frail 79-year-old, wearing his familiar light-blue cardigan and a tie over a button-down shirt and dress slacks, walked slowly out of the Lakeland Correctional Facility in Coldwater, Mich., and grinned cheerfully.

Telling a crowd of reporters outside the detention center that leaving prison was one of the "high points of life," the retired pathologist waved goodbye as he and attorney Mayer Morganroth stepped into a white van and drove away.

In December, the Michigan Parole Board granted his request to leave prison early -- after eight years of a 10- to 25-year sentence for second-degree murder -- because of his good behavior and a promise not to conduct more assisted suicides.

But Kevorkian, who struggles with heart and lung disease and Hepatitis C, plans to keep fighting state laws that prevent physician-assisted suicide.

"He has been clear: He will not break the law. But he will do what he can to change it," Morganroth said. more

Given the combination of those three diseases I'm willing to bet that the last thing Doctor Kevorkian does is push the button on himself as a final attempt to bring his cause back into the limelight.