Health network denies liability in Ohio fertility clinic lawsuits


Health network denies liability in Ohio fertility clinic lawsuits

CLEVELAND

A health care network responding to lawsuits says it wasn’t liable for a storage-tank malfunction that destroyed more than 4,000 eggs and embryos at its fertility clinic near Cleveland.

In court filings made public this week, attorneys for University Hospitals say patients were advised about risks involved with frozen specimens and signed related consent forms. The network said the problem wasn’t caused by hospital negligence and suggested others might be responsible for what happened.

Those responses don’t sit well with some affected patients. An attorney representing more than 100 families says it’s a change from University Hospitals’ previous apologies about what happened.

The health network acknowledged the situation has caused grief for patients and says it was required by the court to formally respond to the lawsuits.

Boat crashes into Lake Erie breakwater, 2 killed

LORAIN

Authorities say a boat crashed into a Lake Erie breakwater after a Northeast Ohio fireworks show, killing a husband and wife and slightly injuring the man’s 10-year-old grandson.

The (Elyria) Chronicle-Telegram reports the U.S. Coast Guard says the accident occurred around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday near Lorain. Both the husband and wife were found unresponsive by rescuers.

The man was pronounced dead at the scene. His wife died at a hospital. The grandson was treated for minor injuries.

Neither the Coast Guard nor the Ohio Department of Natural Resources has released the names of those on the boat.

A Coast Guard petty officer says crews are checking buoys and other equipment to determine if there were any failures that contributed to the crash.

High court denies stay of execution for condemned killer

COLUMBUS

Ohio’s Supreme Court has denied a condemned killer’s motion to stay his execution.

The court denied death-row inmate Robert Van Hook’s motion Thursday without additional comment. He was sentenced to die for fatally strangling and stabbing David Self in Cincinnati in 1985. His execution is set for July 18.

Van Hook had filed a motion seeking the execution delay while he pursues a challenge in a lower court to Ohio’s adoption of its lethal injection protocol.

Prosecutors argued Van Hook knew of the legal challenge over the lethal injection policy as early as 2009 but waited until last month to seek the stay. They argued delaying the execution this late in the process would “constitute an abuse of the justice system.”

A message was left Thursday for his attorney.

Man pleads guilty in ex-girlfriend’s death

COLUMBUS

An Ohio man who authorities say caused his ex-girlfriend’s death by setting her on fire has pleaded guilty to a charge of aggravated murder and avoided a possible death penalty.

Forty-two-year-old Michael Slager pleaded guilty Thursday in 33-year-old Judy Malinowski’s death after reaching a deal with prosecutors. He could have received the death penalty if convicted at trial.

The judge in Franklin County Common Pleas Court sentenced Slager to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Slager had been sentenced to 11 years in prison on aggravated arson and felonious assault charges after Malinowski was doused in gasoline and set ablaze in August 2015 in Gahanna. He was charged with aggravated murder after Malinowski died last year from her injuries.

Slager’s attorney didn’t immediately return a message seeking comment Thursday.

Associated Press

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