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Doctor declares woman dead — and she wakes up screaming in funeral home refrigerator room

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BERLIN — Prosecutors in Germany have charged a doctor with negligent bodily harm for declaring a 92-year-old woman dead, only for her to awaken again in a refrigerated room at a funeral home.

Essen prosecutor Birgit Juergens said Tuesday the 53-year-old doctor, whose name wasn’t released in line with privacy regulations, could face anything from a fine to prison time if convicted.

The doctor is alleged to have pronounced the seriously ill woman dead in March after a caregiver found her without a pulse and not breathing at a retirement home.

That evening, a worker at the funeral home where she’d been taken heard a scream from the refrigeration room and discovered the woman alive.

Juergens says she died two days later in a hospital from heart disease unrelated to the incident.