Federal prosecutors presented segments of a private journal that punched holes in the defense of a California neurosurgeon who faces 60 years to life in prison for allegedly causing four patient deaths by overprescribing opioids, reports The Press Democrat.
Snippets of a journal belonging to Thomas Keller, MD, revealed hateful comments about his patients, where he allegedly celebrated their deaths from opioid overdoses and labeled himself a legal drug dealer.
The trial began Jan. 29 and accuses Dr. Keller of second-degree murder of four Sonoma County, Calif., residents. He is also charged with four felony counts of providing prescriptions without legitimate medical purposes linked to four other patients and one count of elder abuse.
The defense began Feb. 27 after prosecutors rested their case. They opened with one former patient of Dr. Keller's defending his character and the level of care he provided, painting a stark contrast to the physician outlined in the journal.
The trial is expected to close in mid-March, with a jury to decide Dr. Keller's fate.