Thursday, December 19, 2013

Woman pleads guilty to assisted suicide in Alberta

By Alex Schadenberg


The Canadian Press has reported that Linda McNall, an American, has pleaded guilty in a Stony Plain Alberta court in the death of her mother, Shirley Vann, who died by assisted suicide in May 2013.

The article states:
Court heard Tuesday that the women decided to end their lives in a tent, pitched in a secluded mountain area near Rock Lake, about 350 kilometres west of Edmonton. 
On May 8, they swallowed some sleeping pills and injected themselves _ and their two dogs _ with insulin, according to a prepared statement put into the record by the Crown. Next, they opened a propane tank inside the tent and went to sleep. 
Shirley Vann, who was in her 70s, never woke again. The dogs also died.
But 53-year-old McNall survived, despite at least three more suicide attempts over the next two days. 
Hinten Alberta hospital
About 2 a.m. on May 10, when she woke, McNall drove with her mother’s body still in the Jeep to the Hinton hospital. 
Crown Prosecutor, Robert Marr said staff pronounced Vann dead and two propane tanks were discovered inside the vehicle, still releasing gas. 
McNall received medical care and was charged by RCMP four days later.A medical examiner determined her mother died from insulin and propane toxicity. 
Vann previously had colon cancer and suffered other health issues as a result of surgery. 
Marr said an autopsy found no active cancer in the woman’s body.
The article continues:
Marr said: He believes the assisted suicide case is the first in the province. There have only been a handful of other cases in Canada,  he said. 
Whatever the judge decides, McNall will be deported back to the U.S., said Marr. A doctor has also recommended she be transferred to a hospital there to receive treatment for depression.
Linda McNall will be sentenced on January 7, 2014.

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