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Manslaughter Case Nurse Surrenders

July 27, 1998

TULSA, Okla. (AP) _ A former jail nurse surrendered to authorities Monday to face charges of second-degree manslaughter and falsifying evidence about the death of an inmate.

Troy R. Desonia, 37, and fellow nurse Charlene Annette Crawford, 31, were named in indictments unsealed last week. Ms. Crawford turned herself in Thursday; Desonia did so Monday.

Both were released and set to return to court next month.

``Their physical safety would be in jeopardy by being incarcerated,″ said defense attorney Paul Brunton, who represents Desonia.

The defendants worked for Wexford Health Sources Inc., a private company that contracted with Tulsa County to serve the jail.

Desonia and Ms. Crawford are accused of withholding additional medical treatment for an inmate who died Oct. 14 of a ruptured ulcer.

Charles Edward Guffey, 39, was found dead in his cell after screaming ``I’m dying″ and ``I can’t breathe.″ Testimony to a multicounty grand jury indicated neither Ms. Crawford nor Desonia would move Guffey to a medical area in spite of requests from jailers who heard him screaming in pain.

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