2 Guilty of Conspiracy, 1 Acquitted in Anna Nicole Smith Drug Case
Guilty verdicts for Dr. Khristine Eroshevich, Howard K. Stern. One acquitted.
Oct. 28, 2010— -- More than three years after Anna Nicole Smith's death, her psychiatrist, Dr. Khristine Eroshevich, and boyfriend, Howard K. Stern, were found guilty on some counts at a trial alleging a conspiracy to prescribe prescription drugs to an addict.
Smith's doctor, Sandeep Kapoor, was acquitted on all counts he faced.
The defendants were charged with conspiracy, excessive prescribing of opiates and sedatives to an addict, and fraudulently obtaining drugs by using false names.
Stern was found guilty of giving false names and acting by fraud to obtain prescriptions, The Associated Press reported. Eroshevich also was convicted of unlawfully prescribing Vicodin by fraud.
Lawyers for Stern, Kapoor and Eroshevich argued during the trial that their clients were innocent because they were only helping someone with documented pain and depression.
The dazzlingly ditzy reality star and former Playboy model was found dead of a prescription drug overdose in February 2007.
The judge in the case told the jury at the start of the trial that they were not there to determine the cause of Smith's death, but prosecutors said it could have been avoided if she hadn't been recklessly provided a steady stream of pills.
The prosecutor introduced as evidence Kapoor's personal journal in which he allegedly wrote, "I gave her methadone and valium. Can she ruin me?"
"The message is clear," ABC News legal analyst Dana Cole said. "You cannot give drugs to a known addict -- and her whole public perception was that she was a drug-crazed, drug-addicted individual."
Smith's death in a Florida hotel room was one of the first of a string of notable Hollywood deaths by prescription drugs, including Michael Jackson and Heath Ledger.
California Attorney General Jerry Brown said the trend must stop.
"Just because it's in a nice little package and has a name on it and a date and a doctor's name under it, doesn't mean that it can't kill you," he said.
Smith also was to blame, the prosecution said. They claimed that Smith was also guilty in a conspiracy and that she may have traded sex for drugs.