Neurosurgeon Sentenced to Life in Prison for Intentionally Maiming Patients

On Monday, a North Texas doctor convicted of botching surgeries on purpose has been sentenced to life in prison.

A jury deliberated for just over an hour to reach their verdict for Christopher Duntsch.

He was found guilty last week in Dallas.

Duntsch practiced at hospitals in Dallas and Collin counties.

He was found guilty of intentionally injuring Mary Efurd, 74, in a spinal surgery in 2012 that nearly killed her. Efurd now uses a wheelchair and says she has never been the same after that surgery.

Duntsch is also accused of maiming and killing patients during other botched spinal surgeries. His medical license was revoked in 2013 and in 2015 he was arrested.

Jurors in the case heard several patients testify about their physical limitations post Duntsch's surgical procedures.

Duntsch did not testify in his own defense in the trial, which lasted more than two weeks. Efurd described the emotions she felt immediately before the verdict was read.

"I was tense, very tense," she said. "We were hoping for a quick verdict, and actually I think this was a quick verdict. And I was thinking all those things going through my mind and everything happening to me and all the others."

The penalty phase will resume first thing Wednesday morning and testimony is expected through Friday. Duntsch could face life in prison.

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