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Salt Lake County sheriff's detectives are fairly certain that a St. Mark's Hospital hand surgeon was not a victim of a brutal assault, officials said.

Dr. John R. Ream, 52, Holladay, remained in a coma Monday, a St. Mark's spokeswoman said. His condition has not changed since he was found about 7:30 a.m. Friday slumped over a railing in a stairway in the hospital.In an earlier sheriff's office report, investigators had suspected an assault, based on observations from emergency-room workers.

Ream had a habit of running up the stairway, taking two or three steps at a time. Locked doors to the stairway would have prevented the entrance of an assailant.

"He had his hands full with a briefcase and a carton of suckers for his little patients," said sheriff's Lt. Ben Forbes.