MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) — Three years after the death of former Wild tough guy Derek Boogaard, two men are facing charges for allegedly providing him with the drugs that killed him.
Boogaard was found dead in May of 2011 inside his brother’s Minneapolis apartment.READ MORE: Minnesota Ranks Among Top 10 Most Active States, But It's Not All Good News
The medical examiner ruled his death an accidental overdose of prescription pain pills and alcohol.
According to the Grand Jury indictment out of New York, the death was part of a domino effect. One of the suppliers was Jordan Hart, son of hockey legend Gary Hart.
Hart, investigators say, was getting Percocet prescriptions from someone in Utah and started getting pills for Boogard.
We all know how it ended here’s more of what happened in between.
To watch a hockey game involving Boogaard, was often to watch a fight.
After five years on the pro-ice, first with the Wild then the Rangers, he suffered a severe concussion from one of his scuffles.
This grand jury indictment picks the story up from there – saying Boogaard had severe migraines.
A teammate recommended Jordan Hart, a former minor league player who officers say was an illegal supplier of Percocet.
They say he was getting it from a physician’s assistant in Utah.
According to the indictment filed in NY, Johnson, who provided treatment for players on Hart’s team, wrote Percocet prescriptions for Hart on a near-monthly basis, even after Hart left Utah to New York. He continued to provide Percocet to Hart for two years, mailing the prescriptions to Hart without any in-person treatment or examination.READ MORE: Driver Shot While On I-394 In St. Louis Park, Investigation Underway
In all, between June 2009 and July 2011, Johnson prescribed a total of 2,920 Percocet pills to Hart.
The indictment says Hart supplied Boogaard, who was addicted to painkillers and Ambien, with the painkillers that killed him.
At times, it says Boogaard would purchase as many as 120 pills at a time.
Local ER doctor Dave Peterson says when it comes to pain pills people in similar positions often want more.
“Athletes tend to have a lot of injuries, and a lot of pain and a lot of things that need to be treated, so they often times felt to be very strong and they need stronger pain medicines,” Peterson said.
The indictment says Boogaard’s appetite kept growing despite stints in rehab in California.
Investigators say he would swallow pills while driving home from Percocet pick-up, but it was a late night out with his brother in Minneapolis that proved most dangerous.
“Alcohol is a bad mix with any psychoactive agent, especially narcotics. Especially Percocet …” Peterson said.
It was that combination and a network of handlers who investigators say brought a fighter to his death.
This comes about a year and a half after Boogard’s family filed a wrongful death suit against the NHL. The Wild are not commenting on the case.
Hart was to appear in federal court in Manhattan. Johnson was to appear in federal court in Salt Lake City, Utah. It was not immediately clear who would represent them.MORE NEWS: Recipe: Thai Bowls From The Classic Grill At Madden’s On Gull Lake
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