Benoit Update: Doctor Surrenders Today, More

Ryan Clark


ATLANTA (AP) — The state prosecutor in the Chris Benoit investigation said Monday he has no plans to file criminal charges in the case, but whether the federal government does is an open question. “From our standpoint, I have no reason to believe there will be any criminal charges at the current time,” Fayette County District Attorney Scott Ballard told The Associated Press. “What the federal government is going to do, it will be up to them.” A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s office declined to say Monday if any charges were planned. Federal drug agents have taken over the probe into whether the pro wrestler’s personal physician, Dr. Phil Astin, improperly prescribed testosterone and other drugs to Benoit before he killed his wife and son and committed suicide in his suburban Atlanta home last month. Ballard and sheriff’s officials are overseeing the death investigation. Astin’s attorney, Manny Arora, said Monday there could be federal charges filed against Astin in connection with the drug probe. “I wouldn’t be shocked if there’s some charges that come out of this,” Arora told AP, adding that he had spoken with federal authorities and that his client will turn himself in if he is asked to do so. Authorities have said Benoit strangled his wife and 7-year-old son, placing Bibles next to their bodies, before hanging himself on the cable of a weight-machine in his home. Authorities have conducted two raids since last week at Astin’s west Georgia office. Among other things, investigators were looking for Benoit’s medical records to see whether he had been prescribed steroids and, if so, whether that prescription was appropriate, according to a law enforcement official speaking on condition of anonymity because records in the case remain sealed. Astin prescribed testosterone for Benoit, a longtime friend, in the past but has not said what, if any, medications he prescribed when Benoit visited his office June 22, the day authorities believe Benoit killed his wife. Meanwhile, toxicology tests on Benoit’s body have not yet been completed, Ballard said. Anabolic steroids were found in Benoit’s home, leading officials to wonder whether the drugs played a role in the killings. Some experts believe steroids can cause paranoia, depression and violent outbursts known as “roid rage.” Ballard said finding a motive in the case remains elusive. “I think it will always be undetermined as to ‘Why?'” Ballard said. “I think it’s because there can’t be any satisfactory reason why you kill a 7-year-old.”

WAGA is reporting that Chris Benoit’s personal doctor, Dr. Phil Astin, surrendered today to federal agents in Atlanta, GA to undergo questioning. Astin’s offices were raided twice last week, and investigators also raided Astin’s mother’s home where he was staying.

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