Former Medical Examiner Testifies In Stinson Trial

by Gabe Bullard on September 15, 2009

Jurors in the Jason Stinson trial heard testimony Tuesday that dehydration could not have been a factor in the heat stroke death of Pleasure Park High School football player Max Gilpin, and a prescription drug could have caused the teen to collapse during practice last year.

The final witness on Tuesday was former Kentucky Medical Examiner George Nichols. Testifying for the defense, Nichols said hospital tests did not show Gilpin to be dehydrated, which would contradict the prosecution’s claim that Stinson had denied Gilpin and other players water.

“There’s no evidence of significant water loss at all,” said Nichols. “All those tests—which are indicators of the amount of water contained in the system—are normal. And he got those normals without intravenous fluids being administered to him on the way to the hospital.”

Nichols also testified that the prescription amphetamine Adderall could have caused the teen’s heat stroke. Max was taking the drug for attention deficit disorder.

“Many of these are idiosyncratic reactions, meaning they’re unpredictable,” he said. “And if you look at the numbers associated with toxic reactions with amphetamines, they are not necessarily dose or concentration-related. They happen…they happen!”

Nichols said it’s impossible to tell how much amphetamine was in Gilpin’s body because no autopsy was conducted.

The prosecution asserts that Stinson worked his players too hard in practice.

The former PRP coach is charged with reckless homicide and wanton endangerment.

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