Chris Benoit’s doctor and Anna Nicole’s psychiatrist both claim to have been close friends with their deceased celebrity patients. Criminal investigations are now underway to determine if these “good pals” were also to blame for their deaths.
If the doctors’ actions did contribute to the deaths, then expect to have civil suits filed, as well. Dannielynn’s guardian (i.e., Larry Burkhead) can sue for wrongful death based upon medical malpractice. There’s a twist in the Benoit case: state wrongful death statutes list who can sue for the wrongful death of another, and usually it’s limited to immediate family. Georgia law will decide if any Benoit relatives can legally seek civil remedies.
I predict civil suits will be filed. Why?
Last week, Chris Benoit’s doctor was indicted by a federal grand jury for illegal distribution of prescription drugs – including Xanex(alprazolam), Percocet (oxicodone), Adderal (amphetamine), and Lorcet(hydrocodone). It’s a seven-count criminal indictment, involving seven prescriptions written to two patients. It doesn’t include his patient, 2004 WWE champion Chris “The Canadian Crippler” Benoit. When Chris Benoit’s toxicology reports get in, new charges may well be added.
Meanwhile, California authorities are investigating two of Anna Nicole Smith’s doctors. The California Department of Justice is reportedly investigating her psychiatrist, specifically, for prescribing methadone to an 8-month pregnant Anna Nicole, as well as prescribing (click to see the dr’s fax) Dilaudid, Lorazepam, Soma, Delmane, Methadone, and Prexige shortly after Daniel’s death.
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