Percocet case to conclude today |

Percocet case to conclude today

An Aspen man is on trial for allegedly forging a prescription for painkillers last spring after having knee surgery at Aspen Valley Hospital.

Chad Chapman, 31, is charged with second-degree forgery and obtaining a controlled substance by fraud and deceit. He sat in Pitkin County District Court Tuesday as the prosecutor called witnesses to testify about Chapman’s alleged intention to obtain more painkillers than his doctor prescribed.

Dr. Tom Pevny, who performed Chapman’s knee surgery, testified that he prescribed Chapman 30 Percocets to take for any post-operative pain.

Pharmacist Buzz Patten from Carl’s Pharmacy told jurors that he called Dr. Pevny after looking at Chapman’s prescription for “80 Percocet,” a larger number than he’s used to seeing. Patten called police when Dr. Pevny told him he had only prescribed 30 pills.

Prosecutor Lawson Wills presented poster board-sized copies of the prescriptions ” one a carbon copy of Pevny’s instructions to allot 30 pills to Chapman, and one the supposed forged prescription that indicates giving the patient 80 pills.

Police officers testified that Chapman admitted he altered the prescription when he was interrogated, but defense attorney Jeffrey Wertz indicated his client wasn’t thinking clearly after surgery, due to drugs he was given during and after surgery for pain and anesthesia.

Wills has one more witness to call when the trial resumes this morning.

Defense attorney Jeff Wertz has already called the first of his witnesses because the prosecution’s last witness was not available. Aspen resident William Rutledge testified that he picked Chapman up at the hospital with a friend, and tried to fill the prescription at Carl’s.

“His personality and demeanor were different,” Rutledge said of Chapman immediately after surgery. “He’s an outspoken person normally, and when he doesn’t say anything, that tells me he’s in pain or that something is wrong. He was under the influence of something.”

The defense will resume it’s case after Wills’ last witness this morning. Chapman may testify.

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