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"Angel Of Death" Donald Harvey Dies

Donald Harvey before he was sent to prison in the late 1980s.

Former nurse's aide Donald Harvey who admitted to killing 37 patients, many of them at Cincinnati's Drake Hospital, has died from injuries he suffered at a Toledo prison, according to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.

On Tuesday guards found the 64-year-old beaten and hospitalized him. He had been in critical condition since.

Harvey became known as the "Angel of Death" after pleading guilty to deaths at Drake, Cincinnati VA, and Marymount Hospital in London, Kentucky. It was somebody in the coroner's office who discovered cyanide was used to kill a victim on whom he was doing an autopsy. Later it was traced to Harvey. 

WCPO writes on its website:

That might have been the end of the story-one count of murder-except for WCPO anchor Pat Minarcin. Minarcin's investigation revealed a serial killer.

Minarcin spent months going through documents and interviewing people to uncover dozens of other deaths tied to Harvey.

Ultimately the "Angel of Death" admitted to other murders to avoid the death penalty.

In 1987 Harvey was sentenced to life in prison in Hamilton County.

Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters issued a statement Thursday.

I learned that Donald Harvey died this morning after being beaten in prison. Harvey caused a lot of pain in our community. I am sure that some of the victim’s family members are feeling some closure with his death. It may sound harsh but the reality is that I do not have any compassion for Donald Harvey.

With more than 30 years of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market, Ann Thompson brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting. She has reported for WKRC, WCKY, WHIO-TV, Metro Networks and CBS/ABC Radio. Her work has been recognized by the Associated Press and the Society of Professional Journalists. In 2019 and 2011 A-P named her “Best Reporter” for large market radio in Ohio. She has won awards from the Association of Women in Communications and the Alliance for Women in Media. Ann reports regularly on science and technology in Focus on Technology.