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Wendy Young knew her ex-boyfriend Christopher Duntsch’s medical career was unraveling, but she wasn’t prepared for what she said was his bizarre behavior that coincided with his fall from grace as a surgeon.
In one particularly disturbing episode, in March 2015, she said she arrived home to her front door had been locked with a deadbolt from the inside.
“I knocked on my door. Somebody knocks back and I am like ‘Who in the f---is in my house,’” Young recalled in the four-part Peacock docuseries “Dr. Death: The Undoctored Story,” available to stream now. (And if you want to dive even deeper into the story, you can also watch the scripted drama "Dr. Death" on Peacock, starring Joshua Jackson, Alec Baldwin, and Christian Slater.)
The door opened and Young found Duntsch, who had earned the moniker “Dr. Death” after botching 33 of 38 surgeries over a two-year span, inside the apartment “covered in blood,” holding her gun in one hand and a knife in the other, she said.
“He had blood all over him. He seemed really distraught and I was scared,” she said of the father of her two children. “My entire house had been turned upside down.”
According to Young, there was even a ransom note for her and her two children written in blood.
“I don’t know if he’s there to harm me or what his true intentions were,” she said in the docuseries. “At this point, I’m like freaking out, and I just, I leave.”
Young said Duntsch followed her and told her he could explain the bizarre scene.
“He said somebody had been there and they had hit him on the head,” she said.
Young elaborated in a 2016 D Magazine story on Duntsch’s troubled career that Duntsch told her his attacker had been an investigator hired by an attorney representing his angry patients, but that account was never verified.
“I thought is this somebody that you’ve pissed off? Was it you?” Young said in the docuseries. “I still don’t know the answer.”
The encounter was just one of a series of troubling incidents after Duntsch—who once referred to himself as a mixture of “God, Einstein and the Antichrist”—lost his medical license in December of 2013 for leaving numerous patients either maimed, in agonizing chronic pain, or, in two cases, dead.
“It was a downward spiral pretty rapidly after he lost his license,” Young said in the docuseries. “He lost everything, so having to face the reality was very hard for him.”
After his license was revoked from the Texas Medical Board, Young and Duntsch were evicted from their home. Duntsch moved to Colorado to live with his parents, while Young stayed behind in Dallas with the couple’s son.
“A few weeks later I took my first son to visit him for Christmas and then I became pregnant,” Young said.
But Young said Duntsch wasn’t happy at the news of another baby and the couple got into a heated argument, during which Duntsch admitted to seeing other women.
“I was just like ‘Whatever, I’m out of here,’” Young recalled. “So, I went back to Dallas. I didn’t really know how to feel anymore, but while he was out in Colorado we kept in contact.”
Duntsch filed for bankruptcy and was arrested in Denver for driving under the influence on Jan. 10, 2014, according to local station KCNC-TV. According to an arrest report obtained by the outlet, he had been driving on two flat fires and had two empty bottles of Mike’s Hard Lemonade in the vehicle.
“Ultimately, on that case, he ended up getting 12 months (of) probation and a small fine,” Michelle Shughart, assistant district attorney in Dallas County, told “Dr Death: The Undoctored Story.”
Not long after, Young said Duntsch broke into her apartment for the first time.
“He kind of let himself into my apartment by climbing up my balcony,” she said. “I was on the third story.”
But the unexpected reunion wasn’t a happy one.
“We ended up getting into this really big fight, and he slapped me and threw a remote and hit me with the remotes and he was yelling profanities very loud where everyone could hear and saying ‘prostitute’ and ‘whore’,” she said, adding he also started calling her mother names. “At this point, I’ve had enough and so I called the police.”
Duntsch was taken to jail for what Young referred to as a “time out” but his erratic behavior wouldn’t end there. He broke into her home a second time in the incident where he was covered in blood and also allegedly began harassing personal injury attorney Kay Van Wey, who represented many of his former patients, in a series of rambling emails.
“His emails were crazy,” Van Wey recalled in the docuseries. “He had a lot of animus to me personally. He projected that I was the source of a lot of his problems and difficulties.”
Duntsch’s reputation took another dive in April of 2015 when he was arrested for shoplifting at a local Walmart.
According to a police report obtained by The Texas Observer, Duntsch was captured on camera trying to steal $887 worth of merchandise, including pants, briefcases, cologne, watches and sun glasses.
Duntsch had allegedly tried to steal the pair of pants by changing into the new pair in a Wal-Mart dressing room and placing his own pants into the shopping cart. But he was apprehended trying to leave the store.
He was later sentenced to 120 days in jail for the attempted theft, according to court documents obtained by Oxygen.com.
“I think he built up this idea in his head of who he was and what he was going to do with his life and now all of that has disappeared and wasn’t coming back, I think he finds himself in a state where he’s struggling to figure out, who am I now?” Shughart said in the series.
Duntsch’s legal woes were only just beginning. A few months after the shoplifting arrest, Duntsch was charged with multiple counts of aggravated assault and injuring an elderly person for the damage he did on the operating table. Prosecutors argued that the disgraced doctor had used his “scalpel and hands” as weapons to seriously injure or kill his patients.
He was ultimately convicted of injuring an elderly person in connection with Mary Efurd’s case and was sentenced to life behind bars.
“I cried when they said life imprisonment,” Young said of the verdict. “I look at my children, I felt like, ‘How am I gonna explain this to them?’”
Duntsch is now living out his life behind bars, but Young told CNBC's “American Greed” earlier this year that the former neurosurgeon still regularly talks with his two young sons.
“He has a job inside the prison. I don’t know what it is,” she said. “He works out, he reads, he studies the Bible. You know, he’ll call and say goodnight to his boys, um, sometimes he’ll have bedtime stories and try to be as normal as possible.”
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