Prince Doctors Being Investigated By FBI, DEA

By McCarton Ackerman 07/06/16

Dr. Howard Kornfeld and Prince's primary care physician Dr. Michael Schulenberg are being probed in a criminal investigation over the singer's overdose death.

Prince Doctors Being Investigated By FBI, DEA

Two doctors who worked with the late singer Prince are now being investigated by federal authorities over whether they helped him obtain the drug that killed him.

TMZ reported that the FBI, DEA and Carver County District Attorney’s Office in Minnesota are probing California addiction expert Dr. Howard Kornfeld and Prince's primary care physician Dr. Michael Schulenberg. Kornfeld has continued to practice medicine in Marin County, California, while Schulenberg has gone missing from his clinic since Prince’s death.

A search warrant from May showed that Schulenberg treated Prince on April 7 and 20, during which he "prescribed medications" for the singer. The doctor was at Prince’s home when his body was discovered, but told police he was only there to inform the singer of test results.

Kornfeld was contacted by Prince’s team on April 20, the day before he died. The doctor sent his son, Andrew, to the singer’s Paisley Park residence, where the music icon was found dead in an elevator inside the home. Andrew was carrying a “small amount” of buprenorphine, a drug used to treat opiate addiction, but was not authorized to prescribe it. Kornfeld’s lawyer, William Mauzy, said the plan in working with Prince was to get him “stabilized in Minnesota and convince him to come to Recovery Without Walls in Mill Valley," the doctor's treatment center in California.

Andrew, a pre-med student, released an op-ed last month about the tragedy to CNN. He said that “nothing can prepare” someone to witness an overdose death firsthand and declared that “what happened has made me think, long and hard, about what steps we must take to prevent such entirely unnecessary loss of life.” As he now applies to medical school, Andrew vowed to continue advocating for drug reforms that include more doctors being permitted access to prescribe buprenorphine.

“What if my father and had been able to reach Prince just a week earlier, like so many others we have helped take back their lives?” he wrote in the op-ed. “Prince could have been here, standing on the beach beside me.”

An autopsy report on Prince’s April 21st death confirmed that the singer died of a fentanyl overdose and had administered the drug himself. Although many were surprised to hear of Prince’s drug abuse due to him regularly advocating for clean living, singer and ex-fiancée Sheila E. said he “was in pain all the time” due to years of dancing and performing in high-heeled boots.

Please read our comment policy. - The Fix

McCarton Ackerman is a freelance writer and editor living in Portland, Oregon. He has been a contributor for The Fix since October 2011, writing on a wide range of topics ranging from medical marijuana in Colorado to the world's sexiest drug smugglers. Follow him on Linkedin and Twitter.