Lawyers battle in Anna Nicole case
One of Anna Nicole Smith's doctors prescribed drugs to help the model cope with the death of her son and shouldn't be convicted of conspiring to feed her addiction, a defence attorney has argued.
Dr Khristine Eroshevich was responding to a cry for help by prescribing anti-anxiety drugs to the former Playboy model, attorney Brad Brunon told jurors in his closing argument.
Eroshevich, Dr Sandeep Kapoor and Smith's lawyer-boyfriend Howard K Stern have pleaded not guilty to conspiring to provide excessive prescription drugs to an addict and other charges. They are not charged in Smith's 2007 accidental overdose death.
The drug conspiracy case, now in its ninth week, is expected to go to the jury by week's end after a rebuttal by prosecutors.
During his closing argument, Brunon reminded jurors that Smith's son died of a drug overdose in her hospital room just a day after she gave birth to her daughter. He said she was inconsolable and Eroshevich, a psychiatrist, was trying to help her.
As long as Eroshevich had a good faith belief she was writing lawful prescriptions, she should not be convicted, Brunon said.
On Tuesday, Deputy District Attorney Renee Rose concluded some eight hours of prosecution arguments by accusing the defendants of supplying Smith with powerful painkillers despite clear signs of her addiction because they wanted to enhance their relationships with Smith and her celebrity world.
Trial witnesses have said Smith suffered from chronic pain syndrome, seizures, migraines, spinal pain and fractured ribs, among other illnesses.
She experienced physical and emotional pain after the birth of her daughter, Dannielynn, and the death of her 20-year-old son Daniel in 2006.