English churchgoer euthanased against his will

A churchgoing man in England has been euthanased against his will, because his killer reasoned that a dog would not have been allowed to suffer like he did.

Heather Davidson, 54, has been sentenced to life imprisonment after she smothered cancer victim David Paterson, 82, with a pillow, only hours away from his natural death.

Prosecutor Jonathan Sharp said Mr Paterson had “previously firmly expressed his opposition to any intervention in the dying process and at the care home he had never asked anyone to help him end his life”.

“As a devout Christian he had strong ethical objections to euthanasia.

“He directed a DNR (do not resuscitate) instruction on his medical records be removed.

“He said it would be God’s decision and only God’s when it was his time to meet his maker.”

Before ending Mr Paterson’s life, Davidson called a cancer support line and told the handler she was planning to kill Mr Paterson because she could not bear to see him suffer.

Davidson said her friend could not eat or drink, was “skin and bone” and was in a “dreadful state”.

She told the operator: “I just think it would be better if I just put a pillow over his head.”

She went on to ask: “Would I be a murderer if I did that?” and was undeterred by the response: “Yes in the eyes of the law you would.”

Davidson could be heard on the recording protesting: “If he was a dog he would have been put down months ago.”

The call was referred immediately to the police, but could not be traced as it was made on her mobile phone.

The recovering alcoholic then took a pillow and pushed it down on Mr Paterson’s face, even though he struggled against her, injuring himself in his fight to breathe.

Davidson and Mr Paterson both attended the same Church of England parish.

Davidson’s counsel said if she knew Mr Paterson was so close to death, she would never have killed him.

She shows remorse and is ashamed, her counsel said.


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