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The former Mount Carmel anesthesiologist faces 14 counts of murder after prosecutors say he ordered excessive doses of painkillers that hastened the deaths of patients.

Testimony continues in sixth week of William Husel murder trial

William Husel
Barbara Perenic
William Husel sits during his trial Monday, Feb. 28, 2022, in Columbus, Ohio. Husel is accused of ordering excessive painkillers for patients in the Columbus-area Mount Carmel Health System. He was indicted in cases involving at least 500 micrograms of the powerful painkiller fentanyl.

The sixth week of testimony got underway Monday morning in the murder trial of former Mount Carmel doctor William Husel.

Before lunch, David Austin, husband of Husel patient Bonnie Austin, took the stand. Prosecutors asked him about when he heard about his wife's severe condition on September 30, 2018.

"Dr. Husel came out and told me she was brain dead, that her heart was dead, her lungs were dead. The machines were the only thing keeping her alive. What do you want us to do? I told him she didn't want to be like a vegetable," said Austin. "I said 'Is there any chance she'd come out of it?' He said no. I asked him one more time, 'Is there any chance of her coming back again?' He said no. I said 'Pull the plug.'"

Husel's attorney Diane Menasche cross-examined Austin, questioning his memory of what nurses were present the day he decided to remove all life support. Austin said he didn't remember seeing any nurses.

About 50 witnesses have testified so far.

Husel is charged with the murder of 14 of his patients by over-prescribing painkillers. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

The prosecution has said it expects to finish up its case this week.