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Metal Crimes

Late SLIPKNOT Bassist Paul Gray's Doctor Heading To Supreme Court For Wrongful Death Suit

Posted by on February 15, 2016 at 3:12 pm Follow on Twitter | Follow on Instagram

Left: Daniel Baldi, Paul Gray's doctor; Right: Late Slipknot bassist Paul Gray

It's been nearly six years since Paul Gray, the late Slipknot bassist, was found dead in his hotel room, but the  fallout from the death is still being argued in court. Gray's doctor, Daniel Baldi (seen above left) was charged with eight counts of involuntary manslaughter for overprescribing painkiller to eight of his patients (including Gray) who all died of overdoses.

In May of 2014, Baldi was found not guilty of the charges after his defense lawyer made it clear that none of his patients died directly from drugs prescribed by the doctor. During the case, Gray's widow, Brenna testified against his doctor, claiming that he prescribed Gray Xanex pills, even after it was known that Gray was addicted. At the time of Brenna's deposition, Baldi's lawyer noted that only one drug that Baldi prescribed to Paul Gray was found at the scene of the overdoes and it was Suboxone, a medication for people trying to break drug addiction.

In the years since, the decision was appealed and tomorrow, Feb. 16th, the Iowa Supreme Court will hear the case, according to the Des Moines Register, which offers some interesting bits about Brenna Gray's deposition:

On the witness stand, she suggested that evidence of her husband's descent into addiction, including photos of a passed-out Gray that she gave Baldi, purposefully was left out of his medical records, which may have led to a class action lawsuit filed againt Xarelto.

Brenna Gray filed a lawsuit against Baldi two years after her husband died. One of the big outcomes of this case will be to decide how long after a death do family members have to file suit, as Iowa law currently states the family must file within two years.

A victory for Gray's estate would be significant, allowing a plaintiff's lawyers to argue that the ironclad rule shuts out some families with potential claims from having their cases reviewed by a judge or jury, said David Brown, a longtime Des Moines attorney who handles professional malpractice claims. [..]

Winning a ruling from the justices that would allow Gray's case to move forward would require the court to reverse its past decision. In his briefs on the case, Stoltze argues that the court should adopt a "discovery rule" that would give a family member or survivor two years to bring a lawsuit from the time they discover evidence for a potential claim — rather than from the date of death.

The Des-Moines Register has a long report on the history of the case and the potential ramifications of a guilty verdict. Read it here. We'll keep you posted on further developments.

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