No Criminal Charges Filed in Prince’s Drug Death

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The prosecutor in Carver County, Mn., where Prince died, said Thursday that no criminal charges will be filed in the musician’s death, effectively ending the state’s two-year investigation into how Prince got the fentanyl that killed him, reports the Associated Press. Carver County Attorney Mark Metz’s announcement was made after documents revealed that a doctor who was accused of illegally prescribing an opioid for Prince had agreed to pay $30,000 to settle a federal civil violation. Prosecutors alleged Dr. Michael Schulenberg wrote a prescription for oxycodone in the name of Prince’s bodyguard, intending it to go Prince. Metz said the evidence shows Prince thought he was taking Vicodin, not fentanyl. He said there’s no evidence any person associated with Prince knew he possessed any counterfeit pill containing fentanyl.

Prince was 57 when he was found alone and unresponsive in an elevator at his Paisley Park studio compound on April 21, 2016. His death prompted a national outpouring of grief, and prompted a joint investigation by county and federal authorities. An autopsy found Prince died of an accidental overdose of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid 50 times more powerful than heroin. State and federal authorities have been investigating the source of the fentanyl for nearly two years, and have not determined where the drug came from or how Prince got it. The federal investigation is inactive unless new information comes forward. Federal prosecutors alleged Schulenberg, a family physician who saw Prince at least twice before he died, violated the Controlled Substances Act when he wrote a prescription in the name of someone else on April 14, 2016.

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