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Decision delayed for those charged in Muskegon County inmate's death

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Posted at 10:34 PM, Sep 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-24 22:40:28-04

MUSKEGON, Mich. — The decision as to whether five people charged in the death of a Muskegon County inmate will go to trial is being delayed until next month.

Muskegon County District Judge Geoffrey Nolan made the ruling on Friday after neither the Michigan attorney general’s office nor the defense were close to making their cases following two days in court this week.

Four jail staffers and a registered nurse are charged with involuntary manslaughter and face up to 15 years in prison for their alleged involvement in Paul Bulthouse’s death.

READ MORE: 5 charged in connection to 2019 inmate death in Muskegon County

In April 2019, Bulthouse was found unresponsive in his cell. An autopsy ruled his cause of death as an epileptic seizure, but an investigation by Attorney General Dana Nessel’s office determined Bulthouse died of “gross neglect.” The state added the staffers and nurse were nearby but failed to help Bulthouse.

Day two of the preliminary hearing focused on the testimony of Wayne County’s Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Carl Schmidt, who said Bulthouse would still be alive if he were treated properly. He said he based his decision off of Bulthouse's autopsy and hours of video that show him seizing.

The preliminary is set to continue Oct. 14 at 9 a.m.

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