10 Years Ago This Weekend: The Doctor Mark Wangler Murder Case

Dr Mark Wangler 2

The face of innocence? (photo by Jay David)

It was one decade ago, when yet another physician was charged for the death of a spouse:


Doctor Diane Scala Barnett, a forensic pathologist with the Lucas County Coroner’s Office in Toledo, took the stand for the prosecution. Doctor Barnett performed the autopsy on Kathy Wangler on Sept. 5, 2006, a day after the mother of two died from what was determined to be acute carbon monoxide intoxication. Testimony from other prosecution witnesses appearing in Allen County Common Pleas Court focused on a portable generator and other equipment as a possible source of the toxic gas.
Kathy Wangler

Kathy Wangler (center)


Doctor Barnett, who had performed more than 8,000 autopsies and had testified in numerous death cases, said she based her opinion on factors totally inconsistent with Wangler’s story of having found his wife on the bed alive. Her body temperature; lividity (pooling of the blood due to gravity); her rigor mortis (body stiffening generally is noticed about 2 hours after the heart stops) and an evaluation of stomach contents.


At last count, as of late February 2014, prisons in the United States were holding 209  physicians for spousal murder.


Mark Wangler was not the first MD convicted of spousal homicide – far, far from it. And since his “Guilty” sentence was read in Ohio, at least 11 other doctors have been imprisoned for the same crime.


Here’s a medical monster we once knew personally, in the early years of San Diego EMS:


Here’s another look at the fascinating Wangler case:



9 thoughts on “10 Years Ago This Weekend: The Doctor Mark Wangler Murder Case

  1. Doctor Watchdog says:

    Far too many doctors are narcissists and psychopaths.

    • xenonman says:

      It’s always amazing how a little money and being put on a pedestal will convert some people into real sociopaths!

  2. Mobey says:

    Mark wangler is innocent. Those jurors were morons who couldn’t comprehend basic science, follow expert testimony or even grasp the definition of reasonable doubt.
    jurors who came into the trial with being exposed to mistruths covered by the local media and a prosecution that withheld exculpitory evidence. I hope he gets a chance at a new trial.

    • “Mark Wangler is innocent.”

      That’s what’s called an ‘opinion’ from a non-medical, non-forensic layperson.

      “Those jurors were morons . . .”

      We’ll take your word on their IQs, since we don’t know them personally and you do.

      “. . . a prosecution that withheld exculpitory evidence.”

      The word is “exculpatory.” You’re either serious about detail or you’re not.

      And speaking of “exculpatory evidence” if YOU have it – send it, and we’ll be more than happy to publish it. We’re kinda into facts here.

      In the end, you can disparage the jury all you like. But we would be fascinated to know what you know, that the EMS team; Doctor Rina Stein (the ER MD) Doctor Diane Scala Bennett (the pathologist) – don’t.

      So here’s your chance. This would be a terrific time to brag about YOUR forensic examinations of death scenes. You send it; we’ll publish it.

      Then you’ll get to see a photo of our shocked face. WHAAAAAHHH!

    • Joe says:

      clearly guilty….tired of his wife……and there’e no way Co2 could have been introduced into that bedroom in that quantity without artificial means. The jurors were smart enough not to be fooled by junk science.

  3. xenonman says:

    That MacDonald character was a true piece of work!

    Unfortunately, doctors, like professional athletes believe that having a high net worth guarantees their invincibility in the criminal “justice” system!

    • Xenon –

      You’re absolutely right. And sadly, too often it does. In the San Diego suburb of El Cajon last year, a physician was routinely sexually assaulting female patients. The prosecution pointed out to the judge that the acceptable prison term is 20 years.

      The judge gave him home confinement.

  4. Boo boo kitty says:

    Watch his eyes close when he denies killing her. They close every time he lies.

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