Wrestler Chris Benoit’s Doctor Pleads Guilty to Drug Charges
edited by: Jacqueline Gulledge
COWETA COUNTY, Ga. (MyFOX Atlanta) — Dr. Phil Astin, 52, from Carrollton has entered a guilty plea to 175 counts, charging him with illegally dispensing prescription drugs from 2002 until his arrest in 2007. The case stems from the investigation in to the murders of wrestler Chris Benoit’s wife and young son as well as his suicide in June 2007. Astin entered the plea in federal court in Newnan Thursday morning.
According to the federal government, a professional wrestler told investigators that it was widely known in the professional wrestling community that Astin would dispense prescriptions without performing a medical examination. “The [wrestler] said that a number of professional wrestlers obtained prescription drugs from Astin for the purpose of abusing drugs, adding that some of these wrestlers were addicted to these drugs.” (according to the United States Attorney’s Office)
The U.S. Attorney’s Office said one of Astin’s patients was addicted to the illegal prescriptions he had written and overdosed on those drugs in June 2007, which was around the time of the Chris Benoit investigation.
Astin’s practice came under scrutiny after the June 2007 death of one his patients, professional wrestler Chris Benoit. Benoit murdered his wife and 7-year-old son before taking his own life in the family’s Fayette County home.
Inside the house, investigators found steroids and testosterone they say were prescribed by Dr. Astin. In fact, the defendant is accused of prescribing Benoit a 10 month supply of steroids every three to four weeks.
Not long afterward, federal agents raided Astin’s office. That search led to the indictment, which alleges Dr. Astin provided excessive drugs to multiple people, including Benoit, Benoit’s wife Nancy, and other professional wrestlers.
However when the charges were first filed, Astin’s original lawyer defended the doctor’s actions. Now, Dr. Astin may be changing his plea.
Story contents produced by FOX 5 Atlanta WAGA