Doc Tried to Hide Affair With Alleged Poisoner

     HOUSTON (CN) – Though he suspected his mistress had poisoned him, a Houston doctor did not want to share that idea with police as he recovered in an intensive care unit, his fiancee testified on Tuesday.
     Former MD Anderson Cancer Center oncologist Ana Gonzalez-Angulo was charged with felony aggravated assault and arrested in May 2013, after her ex-lover and research partner George Blumenschein told police she had poisoned him.
     Blumenschein’s fiancee, Dr. Evette Toney, took the stand Tuesday in Gonzalez-Angulo’s trial.
     Toney, 50, has a doctorate in epidemiology, the study of disease in a population.
     Her testimony focused on the events of Jan. 27, 2013, when Blumenschein was admitted to an MD Anderson emergency room after calling her earlier that day and telling her: “Evette, I’m not feeling well. I’m calling because if something happens I want you to know my speech is slurred.”
     Tests revealed Blumenschein had been poisoned with ethylene glycol, a sweet-tasting liquid used to make antifreeze, and he underwent dialysis.
     Toney testified that after Blumenschein regained his wits he told her he suspected Gonzalez-Angulo had put the substance in his coffee.
     “Why didn’t you go to the police?” Harris County prosecutor Justin Keiter asked Toney, a dark-haired, attractive woman with a caramel complexion.
     “I was confused as to why he would think his friend would give him poison. … At one point George said ‘Evette, do not poke the dragon. I think she poisoned me and I don’t want to say anything until I know for certain and we have some sort of proof,'” Toney testified.
     She added: “We both were afraid. He said ‘I’m in ICU please don’t say anything. I don’t know what she’s going to do. I don’t know if she’s going to do something to you. I don’t know if she’s going to do something to me.”
     A few weeks into Blumenschein’s hospitalization, Toney said, she asked him about his relationship with Gonzalez-Angulo.
     “What prompted this?” Keiter asked.
     “At that point the defendant was telling me that she wanted to travel with him. She said to me ‘I’ve shared hotel rooms with him several times and I want to travel with him and take care of him.’ And I thought am I hearing you correctly?” Toney said.
     Toney told a packed courtroom that Blumenschein hung his head when she told him what Gonzalez-Argulo said and he confessed to the affair.
     “I felt so stupid. I trusted her. I trusted him. I felt stupid. … It was more than anger I felt betrayed,” Toney said, choking up on the witness stand.
     Toney said she called Gonzalez-Angulo shortly after learning about the affair. They met on the MD Anderson campus and Gonzalez-Angulo allegedly told her, “It was just sex, Evette. It was a mutual thing. It just happened.”
     In spite of the affair, Toney said she and Blumenschein are still together.
     Prosecutor Keiter pressed her on that fact.
     “Everyone in this room is wondering how could you still be with the man who was cheating on you while you were about to have his baby. Who has since dragged you down to this courtroom in a very public setting and had you expose pretty much your entire life to everyone,” he said.
     “We’re still working on our relationship. It’s a work in progress,” Toney replied.
     On cross examination, Gonzalez-Angulo’s defense attorney zeroed in on Toney’s interactions with his client after Blumenschein was poisoned.
     Toney said she kept in contact with Gonzalez-Angulo, regularly updating her about Blumenschein’s health, despite his suspicions that she had poisoned him.
     She also admitted that Gonzalez-Angulo helped her submit paperwork to her employer so she could take leave to be with the ailing Blumenschein.
     “As of Feb. 11, 2013, you are asking for and certainly receiving assistance from Dr. Gonzalez. Fair?” defense attorney Derek Hollingsworth asked Toney.
     “Correct,” Toney said.
     “This is someone that now you told us today that you’re not supposed to poke the dragon.”
     The trial resumed this morning (Wednesday). A verdict is expected later this week. If convicted, Gonzalez-Angulo faces life in prison.

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