- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 23, 2014

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) - A Lawrence health care attendant who is charged in the killing of man with cerebral palsy told authorities his patient wanted to die, court records say.

Ronald Eugene Heskett, 48, of Eudora, is charged with first-degree murder in the asphyxiation death of Vance Moulton. The 65-year-old Moulton had a towel around his head when he was found dead Sept. 12 in his apartment.

Heskett is jailed in Douglas County on a $500,000 bond. His attorney, Mike Warner, told The Associated Press that he didn’t want to comment until after he had finished reviewing the police investigation files.

According to a police affidavit, Heskett told investigators that Moulton repeatedly begged to be killed before the morning of Sept. 12, and that he gave in after Moulton said “he just wanted to walk with his mother again,” the Lawrence Journal-World reported.

Heskett said that at Moulton’s request, he twisted a towel around Moulton’s neck, balled it up on one side and told Moulton to lie on the towel, according to the affidavit. Because of his disability, Moulton was unable to hold the towel himself.

Heskett said Moulton died after what “seemed like forever,” and that he then called his employer and the police.

Douglas County Coroner Erik Mitchell said that the asphyxiation had been caused by a “consistent area of compression surrounding his entire neck.”

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Information from: Lawrence (Kan.) Journal-World, http://www.ljworld.com

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