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Former Pathologist Sentenced to Eight Years for Violating Probation

November 9, 1995

LEVELLAND, Texas (AP) _ A pathologist who lost his license for falsifying autopsy reports and misplacing a head has been sentenced to eight years in prison for violating probation.

Ralph Erdmann was serving 10 years’ probation after pleading no contest in 1992 to falsifying autopsies in three Texas counties.

He later moved to Seattle, where authorities found a cache of firearms in his home, a probation violation.

After his 1992 plea, Erdmann lost his medical license and was ordered to pay about $14,000 in restitution for autopsies he conceded he did not perform.

``You did so much to hurt so many,″ Judge Andy Kupper said in sentencing Erdmann to prison Wednesday after a four-hour hearing.

Of 300 Erdmann autopsies studied, problems were found in at least a third of them. Most of the shoddy work did not involve criminal cases but suicides, auto accidents and baby deaths.

In one case, Erdmann did an autopsy in a murder case and somehow misplaced the head. Without the head _ which contained a bullet wound _ charges against a suspect had to be dropped.

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