A Plethora of Pills

Michael Jackson and Anna Nicole Smith. Two figures of entertainment who couldn’t be more different. Yet, in death, they share some eerie commonalities:  both demises are possibly attributed to would-be prescription drug enablers; both of their offspring are unsure who their legal guardians should be; and, both are mired in morass-like estate battles that would make any probate lawyer’s head spin.

To expound a bit on the drugs, MJ’s situation is a doozy.  With the intention of establishing the most complete medical history possible including pre-existing conditions, previous medical procedures and his drug-use history, Los Angeles County, Coroner’s Office subpoenaed a dozen of MJ’s doctors who administered  services since the early 1990s.  A toxicology report is forthcoming, but that may be only a clue into what led to his death.  By comparison, a Florida medical examiner’s office took six weeks to investigate the cause of Anna Nicole’s death.

Additionally, investigators from the DEA, three state agencies and the L.A. County District Attorney’s office pored over evidence related to her death for two years before prosecutors charged HKS and two physicians with conspiracy to illegally furnish Anna Nicole (who purportedly used the disturbing pseudonym “Wilma Flinstone”) with sleeping pills, painkillers and other drugs.  Adam Braun, defense attorney for Khristine Eroshevich, said such investigations take much longer than other probes because of the medical expertise required to review cases.  “The patient might be seeing three or four different doctors who are prescribing medications that the other doctors are unaware of…Just because there is a deadly cocktail doesn’t mean the actions of one physician were inappropriate.”

It’s becoming directly proportional that the more infamous a celebrity’s reputation, the more likely it is for any semblance of stability in that’s individual’s life to be an ephemeral concept.  We will remain riveted to both of these troubling tragedies with the hope that answers are forthcoming.

9 thoughts on “A Plethora of Pills

  1. Thank you for another well-written commentary. For many, seeing the Michael Jackson death and drug saga unwind is like Deja vu for those that have followed the Anna Nicole Case. The exception though is that Anna died on Tribal Land in Florida and neither the Tribe nor the Florida authorities had any inclination to pursue the matter.

    On the other hand, Michael died in California and the California authorities will leave no stone unturned even if doctors are out of state. The long arm of California will find them via the DEA and FBI.

    California was the last to get involved in the Anna Nicole case – and only at the behest of many who complained to the California Medical Board and to the Attorney General’s Office in California. It took two years of gathering information and investigation to get charges filed on the two doctors and the lawyer who provided Anna Nicole her “plethora of drugs”.

    As we know the charges against the doctors are very serious. Even they must know that what they did goes against all medical practices, guidelines, oaths, etc. I have no doubt they will be found guilty, lose their licenses to practice and do jail time.

    As for the attorney, Howard K. Stern would you please comment on whether Mr. Stern is in a worse situation considering the facts that he is a lawyer who should know the laws; he was her lawyer; her manager; confidant; supposed lover; the drugs were in his name and, he procured them and administered them to his client.

    I would also be interested in your opinion of any paperwork, agreements, contracts that Anna Nicole Smith signed while in this condition and under his guidance. Can they be voided and/or nullified?

    1. **I believe Mr. Stern as a lawyer owed his client ANS duties above those of an ordinary citizen and that he will be held to a higher standard of care. Also, there are fiduciary aspects to his relationship to her as her manager which will also hold his actions to a stricter standard.
      **Doctors also are in a position of trust and are to be judged more strictly than ordinary citizens such as office clerks.
      **A person’s capacity will be diminished when they are under drugs or alcohol, and contracts should be void and null since such a person lacks the capacity to agree to a contract. ANS seemed to me to me to be a puppet under the control of HKS and the doctors in a conspiracy to use her to get money. That is my opinion.

  2. I cannot share the same assuredness as to the guilt of the doctors in question and so I will wait for the trial to play out….but obviously in both cases something was not right. Prescription drugs were doled out to both Michael and Anna in quantities that should be unheard of and someone must be held accountable. People like Michael’s doctors and Howard K. Stern should really take a solid look in the mirror and ask themselves whether it was worth trying to control a friend with dangerous substances in exchange for the opportunity to tag along and possibly experience a higher level of wealth. While those around Michael may have seen and influx of funds from the tour he had planned, Howard K Stern and Co. couldn’t have been too confident in the appearance of any assets since the claim Anna pursued for so long against the Marshall family was totally bogus. How things change from counting your future dollars to strategizing to avoid time in prison.

    1. I tend to concur, however, I believe that you are underestimating HKS and ANS’s level of confidence. These were two folks who were convinced that they could “con” the court into believing their story about the tortious interference and all of the other arguments that they have thrown at the Marshall estate. I speculate that if HKS wasn’t under the deluded notion that his arguments could change the way probate works forever he wouldn’t have fought tooth and nail for ANS’s little girl.
      Let’s all hope that the 9th circuit sees through this little mind game and finds for the Marshall family- the future of probate law depends on it!

  3. I’m with ReaganPupps and certainly hope that the 9th finally gives the Marshall family the justice they deserve!

  4. We are each responsible for our own actions.
    However, we trust doctors too much. They have too much power. There is nothing to stop a greedy doctor from taking advantage of people with arrested development like Anna Nicole Smith or Michael Jackson.
    Other doctors are not able to speak out because of the strong “conspiracy of silence” that keeps the mouths of all doctors tightly shut against wrongdoing doctors. There are many severe penalties including shunning and loss of hospital privileges and more for any doctor who dares to criticize any part of the medical system.
    We see a few doctors speaking out in the MJ case because it was so obvious and outrageous.
    The individual doctor is usually a good person, but there are too many opportunities to take greedy advantage of a weakened patient – without safeguards.
    And as for Howard Stern, in my opinion he is DESPICABLE, and my brain and gut instincts have judged him morally guilty even though he is legally innocent until proven guilty in court. I believe he is as guilty as sin of the murders of both Anna Nicole and her son because of the many times I saw him flaunting his manipulation of Anna Nicole on TV in her state of diminished capacity.
    That’s my strong instinct. Now let us see what the Court finds.

    1. Murders of Anna Nicole and Daniel??!! You use a word MURDER very easely. Have you ever heard of LIBEL? You hide behind computer screen and think you can call someone a murderer

  5. Those of us who have followed the ANS nightmare for nearly 3 years, indeed use the word MURDER very easily. Many of us are convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that both Daniel and Anna died at the hands of another. But we also believe justice is coming.

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