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Inmate sues prison for saving his life

July 18, 2011 at 5:46 PM

DENVER, July 18 (UPI) -- A convicted killer is suing a Colorado prison for not letting him die despite his do-not-resuscitate order.

"I've been wrongfully convicted and called a baby-killer. Death would be welcome relief," Daniel Self told The Denver Post in an interview at Sterling Correctional Facility.

He says his damages are accruing "a million dollars" for every day he must live on in prison.

Self's lawyer, Brett Lampiasi, filed the suit in federal court in Denver, asserting prison officials were deliberately indifferent to Self's right to refuse treatment.

Self, now 54, from Colorado Springs, was convicted of fatally shooting his pregnant girlfriend, Leah Gee, 24, in 2003. He says she shot herself. Nine appeals of his conviction have gotten him nowhere.

On Jan. 22, 2009, Self filled out a directive that he did not want cardiopulmonary resuscitation if he stopped breathing or his heart stopped. Prison staff assured him it would be placed at the top of his medical chart, he said.

Self, suffering from sleep apnea, stopped breathing April 4, 2009.

He was rushed to the infirmary, where an employee noted he was treated "despite the presence of DNR," and then flown by helicopter to Denver for more care.

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