Narendra Nagareddy, a Georgia psychiatrist nicknamed “Dr. Death,” has been indicted for murder for allegedly overdosing three of his patients, The Washington Post is reporting.
A Clay County grand jury charged him on three counts of murder and 59 supplementary counts of unlawful distribution of pain prescriptions. Dr. Death was arrested in January by a Drug Enforcement Administration task force after 36 of his patients turned up dead after his prescriptions of controlled substances.
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Confirmed autopsy reports by investigators said 12 patients died from drug overdoses but refused to give information about the other 24 patients. Reports claim that the other cases were not put in front of a grand jury because the deaths did not occur in Clayton County.
Nagareddy is accused of running a so-called “pill mill” from his office in Riverdale, Georgia, which is near Atlanta, for 3 years. The 57-year-old became notoriously known as the go-to-guy for pills, because he provided pills for anyone who wanted them without asking questions. He is charged with prescribing pills that killed Cheryl Pennington, 47, David Robinson, 49, and Audrey Austin, 29, who was a mother of two children.
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Dr. Nagareddy has allegedly prescribed excessive amounts of controlled substances for no medical reasons, resulting in drug abuse and the diversion of controlled substances that he had approved for patients. Ruth Carr, mother of Audrey Austin, confirmed that her daughter died of a painkiller prescription overdose the same day she visited the doctor. She confessed that her daughter was addicted to painkillers, but the quack doctor made it very easy for her daughter to access the drugs.
Mike Jones confirmed that wife Cheryl Pennington and his son were both patients of Dr. Nagareddy. He said, “I had no idea that our son had never been tested or anything. He was just given prescriptions.” With regards to his wife, he continued, “the doctor in the ER flat out told me that her liver was completely shot from years of pain medication, and to come to find out, he was the one giving her pain medicine.”
In March, the doctor had described himself as an honest man who looked after patients that were seriously ill. He is presently being held with no bond. He has denied the allegations placed before him. His attorney, Steve Frey, said that he and his client would be ready to defend the matter in court; he added that Nagareddy was innocent of all charges pinned on him.
This is the latest development in a protracted investigation involving Nagareddy and his dodgy medical practice. A probation officer was the first person to raise a red flag after she noticed that three dead people on her case file had been patients of the doctor. She reported the suspicious deaths to the Drug Enforcement Administration, who, with the help of local police authorities, built a case against Nagareddy. He was indicted for contravening the Georgia Controlled Substances Act for prescribing medications without medical justifiable cause. He was later released on a $100,000 bond.
According to court documents, 36 of Nagareddy’s patients died from controlled substances that included oxycodone, hydrocodone, fentanyl, amphetamine, and methadone. His patients were struggling with panic attacks, depression, and addiction. Some former patients credit him for saving their lives and lauding him as the only physician who would attend to them without insurance. Others labeled him a “drug pusher,” saying his waiting room was often packed with dazed patients. “You could tell a lot of them were junkies,” said Rebecca Gray, whose sister overdosed on painkillers.
[Image via Clayton County Police]