- The Washington Times - Sunday, October 14, 2001

ANNAPOLIS A woman who badgered a co-worker into killing her did not commit suicide, the state's highest court said Friday.
The ruling means the estate of Mary Gaye Fister can collect $1.3 million on the three life-insurance policies she took out before her death in 1996.
Mrs. Fister convinced Lawrence Goldman to pull the trigger of a shotgun pointed at her head.
"Suicide is the intentional taking of one's own life; i.e., by his or her own hands," the court said. "Therefore, Fister's death could not be considered a suicide."
The decision reversed a ruling by the Court of Special Appeals that even though Mr. Goldman pulled the trigger, Mrs. Fister's death was suicide because she intended to take her life and took all the steps, except the final one, to carry out her desire.
Bruce Kauffman, an attorney representing Mrs. Fister's estate, said the ruling by the Court of Special Appeals would have set a dangerous precedent in establishing a new definition of suicide.
Jeffrey Forman, who also represented the estate, said some of the money will go to Mrs. Fister's mother and two children and some to creditors to whom she owed more than $1.2 million.
"We are very, very pleased that the Court of Appeals has said suicide means you kill yourself, and it doesn't mean anything else," Mr. Forman said.

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