More than two years after Prince died of an accidental fentanyl overdose, Dr. Michael Schulenberg is being sued for failure to treat his opiate addiction. The family’s attorney, John Goetz, made the announcement on Friday, reports ABC News.
According to Page Six, Prince’s family believes Schulenberg is responsible for his April 2016 death because he continued to prescribe oxycodone.
In the lawsuit filed in Hennepin County District Court, it is alleged that the physician is among those who could have prevented the Rock & Rock Hall of Famer’s death. Instead, authorities asserted that Schulenberg owned up to writing scripts under the name of a bodyguard for Prince’s privacy, just days before his death. A claim he disputed, despite paying $30,000 to settle a federal civil violation alleging that he illegally prescribed the drug.
Prince’s family is seeking $50,000 for unspecified damages. This current lawsuit will replace one the family filed against an Illinois hospital and Walgreens pharmacy earlier this year. The seven-time Grammy winner was treated at Trinity Medical Center a week before his death for an opioid overdose after his plane made an emergency landing. However, his estate wanted to bring the lawsuit back to his home state.
“Prince lived in Minnesota all his life and passed away here, so we always thought his family’s lawsuit belonged in Minnesota,” Goetz said in a statement.
Paul Peterson, an attorney for Schulenberg, doesn’t believe the lawsuit can be justified.
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Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.