LOS ANGELES: The American model and TV personality Anna Nicole Smith consumed increasing amounts of a rare sleep medication in the months after her son’s death, eventually drinking the powerful liquid sedative straight from the bottle, her former bodyguard has testified.The drug, chloral hydrate, was cited as the primary cause of Smith’s fatal overdose the following year, and her bodyguard said the model often carried a bottle of it as she grieved her son.”I saw her use a spoon maybe twice, and after that it was bottle to mouth – gulp,” said Maurice Brighthaupt, a Miami firefighter who moonlighted as Smith’s security guard.Mr Brighthaupt took the stand on the second day of a hearing that will determine whether prosecutors have enough evidence to try Smith’s long-time companion, Howard Stern, and two Los Angeles doctors on charges of conspiring to furnish her with illegal prescription medications. All three have pleaded not guilty.One of the doctors, Khristine Eroshevich, a psychiatrist, prescribed the chloral hydrate to Smith after her son, Daniel, died in 2005. Mr Brighthaupt testified that on one occasion, when he drove the doctor from the airport to Smith’s house in the Bahamas, Dr Eroshevich said she was reluctant to give the medication.But ”Anna was begging for it and she really needed it”, he quoted her as saying.Mr Brighthaupt said he saw Mr Stern, a lawyer who became Smith’s adviser and then her lover, pass her a bottle containing chloral hydrate, inject Smith with other medication ”more than seven times” and recounted one occasion he encountered Mr Stern in a bathroom using a cigarette lighter and a spoon to melt Valium into an injectable form. ”They felt it would get in her system faster,” he said.Mr Brighthaupt said he was uncomfortable testifying against Dr Eroshevich. ”I consider her a very kind … person who wouldn’t do anything to anybody,” he said.When a prosecutor asked a toxicologist to testify about the hypothetical effect of hundreds of pills prescribed to Smith 10 days before her death, Superior Court Judge Robert Perry interrupted, asking: ”Whose fault is it that somebody takes too many pills?”The deputy district attorney, Renee Rose, replied that the defendants were ”fully aware” that Smith was an addict. ”It’s like putting a gun in the hand of someone who is suicidal and saying, ‘Don’t pull the trigger,’ ” Ms Rose said.Los Angeles Times
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