In what professional and personal ways is Dr Mormiter involved in the case in "Hound of the Baskervilles"?Could he be a suspect?

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dymatsuoka eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Dr. James Mortimer was closely acquainted with Sir Charles Baskerville.  He considered himself to be "his personal friend as well as his medical attendant".  Their relationship began when Charles sought Mortimer's services as his physician, and continued because both were educated men with much in common to discuss in the field of science. 

As a physician, Dr. Mortimer had evidently followed Sir Charles as a patient for many years, and was intimately knowledgeable about his medical history.  He was aware that Baskerville was a victim of advanced heart disease, and, knowing that the gentleman had been under considerable stress because of his belief in the Baskerville curse, had recommended that he take a holiday in London for a time in the better interest of his health.

Although there appear to be a couple of reasons why Mortimer might be considered a suspect, his actions and demeanor seem to counter any indication of guilt.  He admits that he was less than truthful in his eyewitness account to the authorities, but had good reasons for withholding information.  With Sherlock Holmes, he appears to be completely honest and truthful.  As the physician of Sir Charles, he was also privy to information that others may not have had, knowing as he did that a terrible fright could kill the old gentleman.  Mortimer's obviously genuine concern for Charles, however, and his forthrightness is seeking counsel from Holmes, would seem to indicate that he had nothing to do with the killing (Chapter 2).

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The Hound of the Baskervilles

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