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‘He might have killed me:’ Doctor sentenced to jail for choking Lone Tree nurse

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Posted at 12:44 PM, Jun 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-23 14:45:38-04

LONE TREE, Colo. — A Colorado doctor who choked a nurse at Sky Ridge Medical Center in Lone Tree last fall was sentenced to 30 days in jail.

Mark Randle Ryan, 58, was sentenced Monday after he pled guilty in March to one count of second-degree assault by strangulation, a felony, and one count of third-degree assault, according to a release Tuesday from the 18th Judicial District.

The sentence includes a three-year deferred judgment and three years probation, as well as 100 hours of community service, mental health treatment and anger management therapy. Ryan has relinquished his medical license.

The assault took place Oct. 8 inside a patient’s room at the Lone Tree hospital. Ryan was working as a contract anesthesiologist when he and the charge nurse in the recovery room had a disagreement about him turning off the vital-sign machines of patients recovering from surgery, according to the release.

Ryan grabbed a 51-year-old female nurse by the throat and squeezed her neck so that she felt pain and saw stars, she told Lone Tree police officers after contacting them to report the incident later that night.

“I was assaulted by a man who took an oath to do no harm. I feel he might have killed me if no one else would have been around,” the victim told Douglas County District Court Judge Theresa Slade during sentencing Monday.

Judge Slade told Ryan his actions put other patients at risk.

“This happened in front of other patients and in front of other professionals. When you did this to (the nurse), she couldn’t care for other patients, and you put them at risk. You don’t get to act this way, ever,” Judge Slade told Ryan.