WESTBROOK, Connecticut—A Westbrook man helped kill his cancer-stricken wife and now faces manslaughter charges, state police said.
Kevin Conners, 65, told investigators that he held a revolver to the head of his wife, Lori, 62, who pulled the trigger on Sept. 6, according to the arrest warrant.
Conners turned himself in at a state police barracks Thursday and posted $50,000 bail, authorities said. He is scheduled to make a court appearance on Friday, June 21. A phone message was left at a number listed for his home address.
On the night his wife died, Conners called 911 and told officers who arrived that he had been woken up by the sound of the gunshot.
Questioned further by police he said he had helped his wife because he couldn’t watch her suffer anymore. He said he held the gun because his wife was worried about flinching when pulling the trigger, according to the warrant.
The gun was loaded with .38-caliber ammunition, with one spent shell casing and five live rounds inside the cylinder, police said, according to the Greenwich Time.
Lori had been diagnosed with terminal cancer and was undergoing chemotherapy treatments which, combined with symptoms of Lyme disease, made her very ill and sapped her will to live, police said Conners told them.
Lori had told her husband she no longer wanted to live, Conners told police, according to the warrant.
“Lori told her husband and children she ‘wanted to be with God,’ which police confirmed with the children, the warrant said,” the Greenwich Time reported.
A 65-year-old Connecticut man is facing a manslaughter charge for allegedly holding the gun during the assisted suicide of his terminally ill wife, according to state policehttps://t.co/yyxAEZ6rFq
— Greenwich Time (@GreenwichTime) June 20, 2019
Kevin Conners also told authorities that he and his wife had done research on states where assisted suicide is legal, including Vermont, and considered going there before deciding it wasn’t an option because Lori was not a Vermont resident, according to the warrant.
Prosecutions for assisted suicide in Connecticut are not common.
A legislative proposal to allow medical aid in dying was introduced in Connecticut’s General Assembly this spring but did not win approval.
Reported cases of assisted suicide are rare, the Hour reported.
“In 1994, for instance, a Westport man charged with manslaughter for helping his dying father commit suicide was placed on two years’ probation after being described by the judge as a loving son who was carrying out his father’s wishes,” The Associated Press reported at the time.
A 65-year-old Connecticut man is facing a manslaughter charge for allegedly holding the gun during the assisted suicide of his terminally ill wife, according to state policehttps://t.co/9HDKNxvLAY
— TheHourNews (@TheHourNews) June 20, 2019
According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report Vital Signs: Trends in State Suicide Rates on June 8, 2018, revealing that suicide rates have increased by 30 percent since 1999. However, the report points out that there were a variety of factors other than mental health conditions that lead to suicide.
“Suicide rates increased significantly across most states during 1999–2016. Various circumstances contributed to suicides among persons with and without known mental health conditions,” the report stated.
NTD News staff contributed to this article.