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CBS To Release Full Kevorkian Video

November 25, 1998

DETROIT (AP) _ CBS said it will release the unedited version of Dr. Jack Kevorkian’s videotape of a terminally ill man’s death to prosecutors.

The Oakland County prosecutor subpoenaed ``60 Minutes″ for the videotape of Thomas Youk’s death Monday, a day after it was aired nationally.

Kevin Tedesco, a spokesman for ``60 Minutes,″ would not discuss why CBS decided to comply with the subpoena beyond saying, ``It was our understanding (Kevorkian) wanted it made public.″

Prosecutor David Gorcyca’s office said Tuesday that it would decide whether to charge Kevorkian in Youk’s death after ``a full review of the tapes and completion of the investigation by the Waterford Township Police.″

The office expected to receive the tape today, one day after Kevorkian shook up his legal team amid a dispute over the case.

Kevorkian asked Wayne State University law professor Robert Sedler on Tuesday to become his legal adviser, said his lawyer, David Gorosh.

``Dr. Kevorkian has indicated that he doesn’t need a trial lawyer. He doesn’t need a criminal defense attorney,″ Gorosh said today. ``He asked me to continue on with him. I’m not sure how long I can continue to do that.″

Gorosh said Kevorkian is wrong to try to defend himself and needs a lawyer representing him in court.

Kevorkian told The Oakland Press of Pontiac that he and Gorosh had had ``a parting of the ways,″ and he asked Sedler for help.

Kevorkian had brought the tapes to CBS, which used edited portions that showed a figure _ Kevorkian’s face was never shown _ injecting Youk with a lethal dose of drugs.

Gorosh said Kevorkian told him the unedited tape contains more of Youk talking about his painful condition. Youk suffered from Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Kevorkian said Youk died Sept. 17, less than three weeks after the enactment of a Michigan law making assisted suicide a felony punishable by up to five years in prison.

In the program, Kevorkian challenged prosecutors to charge him.

Kevorkian initially planned to release the tape to prosecutors himself, but Gorosh said he persuaded him not to. Gorosh said he didn’t think Gorcyca would need to see the unedited tape to decide whether to file charges.

Kevorkian has acknowledged taking part in some 130 suicides since 1990 but said this was the first time he directly administered the fatal substance. In previous cases, he said, he had an apparatus that let the patient start the flow of drugs or lethal gas.

Kevorkian has been acquitted in three trials involving five deaths. A fourth trial ended in a mistrial.

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