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The Nation

Gary Heidnik, sentenced to death for torturing and killing two of six women he abducted and held in his Philadelphia home, was in a coma after an apparent New Year’s Day suicide attempt in prison, his lawyer said. Heidnik, 45, apparently took an overdose of Thorazine, a prescribed anti-psychotic drug, in his cell at the State Correctional Institution in Pittsburgh, his attorney, A. Charles Peruto Jr., said. A prison guard making his rounds found Heidnik unconscious early Sunday, Lt. William Balzer said. Heidnik was taken to the West Penn Hospital in Pittsburgh, where he was under a police guard, Balzer said. Peruto said Heidnik was in critical condition. Heidnik was convicted July 1, 1988, of first-degree murder, kidnaping, rape, aggravated assault and involuntary deviate sexual intercourse.


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