Green sticks to his guns under cross by government prosecutor

Suspended Perry doctor Spurgeon Green Jr. stuck to his guns Tuesday under vigorous questioning by a government prosecutor.

Green, physician’s assistant Dorothy Mack and pharmacist Jack Joseph are on trial in federal court in Macon on charges of conspiring to distribute drugs “not for a legitimate medical purpose and outside the usual course of professional practice” from January 2000 to July 2003.

The 118-count indictment charges that Green distributed medications that led to the deaths of seven people as well as serious bodily injury to six other people, who died in instances in which the drugs prescribed were a contributing factor.

Mack is implicated in three of the death charges and two of the serious bodily injury charges, while Joseph is implicated in four of the death charges, according to the indictment.

Green returned to the stand Tuesday after two days of testimony last week in his own defense for questioning by U.S. Assistant Attorney Jennifer Kolman.

The 69-year-old doctor is accused of performing only minimal exams of patients on first visits to his medical clinic while also failing to check past medical histories and verify prescription histories before prescribing powerful narcotics.

Green testified Tuesday that he did an extensive medical exam of every new patient from “head to toe” that lasted an average of 40 minutes.

But Kolman asked Green about the initial office visit of Jack Smith, a semi-retired auto salesman from Roberta who came into Green’s office as part of an undercover Houston County sheriff’s investigation wearing a wire to record the conversation.

The taped recording of that visit, played again for jurors Tuesday, lasted six minutes and six seconds. The recorded conversation starts with the patient and doctor introducing themselves and ends with Green instructing Smith to get dressed.

Kolman also produced a copy of Green’s computer record of that visit that indicated an extensive examination of Smith.

Green also is accused of falsifying and manipulating patient files.

The doctor testified Tuesday that patient files were either inadvertently corrupted by the government when retrieving the data, or that some of the files were simply missing after authorities raided his medical practice and seized the files.

Green testified that a computer program he wrote had internal flaws that accounted for incorrect data recorded in many of the patient charts.

“If they didn’t understand the flaws, they would corrupt the data,” Green told jurors.

However, Kolman reminded Green of a stipulation to the evidence that he agreed to as to the integrity of those records. Green testified that he didn’t recall signing off on the stipulation and noted that he did whatever his attorney told him to do.

The stipulation, which was read aloud to jurors Tuesday by U.S. District Judge C. Ashley Royal, states that the patient files are “true and accurate representations of those computer records.”

Green previously testified that he wrote prescriptions appropriate for the treatment of the medical condition of his patients, that there was no risk of serious bodily injury or harm had the medications been taken as prescribed and that he acted within the bounds of legitimate medical practice and the standard of care.

Testimony is expected to resume Wednesday in the trial, which is now in its fifth week.