Doctor accused of killing his girlfriend dies in prison

Cause of Stryker’s death not released

By Denise Lavoie
Associated Press / January 14, 2011

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A doctor ordered to pay a $15 million civil judgment in the murder of his girlfriend has died in a prison hospital.

Timothy Stryker died Wednesday at Lemuel Shattuck Hospital in Boston, said Diane Wiffin, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Correction. Wiffin would not release the cause, but said his death had been anticipated.

Stryker, an endocrinologist, was serving a four-year prison sentence after pleading guilty in a perjury scheme. Prosecutors said he had enlisted two men to help him concoct a story about seeing his girlfriend with another man shortly before she was last seen alive.

Stryker was never criminally charged in the death of Dr. Linda Goudey, 42, an obstetrician from Stoneham. In 2006, a civil jury found there was enough evidence implicating Stryker and ordered him to pay $15 million to Goudey’s family in their wrongful death lawsuit.

Goudey’s body was found Oct. 4, 1993, covered in a blanket in her Saab in the parking lot of New England Memorial Hospital in Stoneham. She had been strangled. Stryker insisted he had nothing to do with her death.

Middlesex District Attorney Gerard T. Leone Jr. said prosecutors were still actively investigating Stryker as a suspect in Goudey’s death and investigators had been encouraged by the progress they were making.

“With his death . . . we will be forced to close the book on our criminal investigation, as Stryker was and remains our only suspect,’’ Leone said in a statement.

He asked members of the public to come forward with information they may have, “now that Stryker is dead and fear of retribution is not warranted.’’

In a motion for a new trial filed after the civil judgment, Stryker submitted a sworn affidavit from Craig Pizzano, who said he saw a woman in the early morning of Oct. 1, 1993, in a Saab in the hospital parking lot having a sexual encounter with a man who resembled former NFL quarterback Boomer Esiason. Pizzano later recanted his story and testified to a grand jury that he lied as part of a scheme that Stryker and another man concocted and orchestrated.

Michael Altman, a lawyer who represented Goudey’s mother, Marguerite Rafuse, in the civil case, said Stryker’s assets were used to pay a portion of the $15 million judgment. He said he has mixed feelings about Stryker’s death.

“Just as a human being, one doesn’t like to feel good that anyone has died and been terribly sick,’’ he said. “This does bring closure to a very terrible event.’’

Attorney Kevin Mahoney, who represented Stryker in the perjury case, said that while that case was pending, he received letters from hundreds of Stryker’s patients offering support.