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April 23rd, 2010
10:01 AM ET

Morning Buzz: Assisted suicide goes to court

Eliza Browning
AC360° Associate Producer

Dr. Jack Kevorkian isn’t the only “Dr. Death” in the United States. Physician-assisted suicide is legal in three states – Montana, Oregon and Washington. Doctors can write lethal prescriptions for people who choose to end their lives. Massachusetts has a bill in the legislature that would legalize it too. Two Connecticut doctors are in court to challenge the law that would have them prosecuted with second-degree manslaughter for prescribing lethal medication. Randi Kaye examines their case and talks to one of their patients tonight.

As the country was entering its worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, Security and Exchange Commission employees and contractors allegedly were surfing porn sites at work using government computers, according to an agency report obtained by CNN. In a letter to Senator Charles Grassley, the SEC Inspector General wrote that one senior attorney at SEC headquarters in Washington spent up to eight hours a day accessing Internet porn. An SEC accountant attempted to access porn websites 1,800 times in a two-week period and had 600 pornographic images on her computer hard drive. Another SEC accountant attempted to access porn sites 16,000 times in a single month.

The SEC’s inspector general conducted 33 probes of employees looking at explicit images over the past five years. Thirty-one of those investigations occurred in the 2 ½ years since the financial crisis began. How often do these investigations happen and were these employees dismissed?

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer didn’t take action yesterday, but could sign the state’s immigration bill into law as early as this afternoon. The bill would make it a state crime to be in the country illegally and requires local law enforcement to determine an individual’s immigration status if they suspect that person is in the country illegally. Brewer has until tomorrow to sign or veto the bill and if she does neither, it will tacitly become law. This issue has sparked a lot of debate. What do you think?

And we’ve been following the tragic story of Phoebe Prince, a 15-year-old girl who hanged herself in January after enduring what prosecutors described as months of bullying. The teens who have been accused of bullying Prince are charged with civil rights violations. But defense attorneys are expected to use new evidence from Prince’s journal to argue that the teenage girl may have had psychological issues before the bullying. Apparently, she noted “cutting,” in her journal and referenced to the book, “Cutting,” by Dr. Steven Levenkron about understand and overcoming self-mutilation.

Tonight Anderson talks to Dr. Levenkron about why cutting and self-mutilation has become a growing trend among adolescents, teens and – especially – girls. Lisa Bloom also weighs in on how this new evidence may affect the case.

What else are you following? Let us know and see you at 10 p.m. ET.


Filed under: Eliza Browning • The Buzz
soundoff (One Response)
  1. Mary P Raynor

    I believe it is a patient's chose and a doctor's responsibility should be to assist without legal ramifications!

    April 23, 2010 at 10:28 am |

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