Convicted Montana Pain Doctor Back in Custody

Attorney taking blame for filing error that put client back in jail

By Tristan Scott

MISSOULA — A 69-year-old former Montana pain doctor convicted of overprescribing opioids leading to the deaths of two patients is back in custody after missing an appeal filing deadline with the state Supreme Court.

Chris Christensen is currently housed in the Ravalli County Detention Center awaiting a Wednesday court hearing on the matter.

The Missoulian reports that Christensen’s attorney, Josh Van de Wetering, filed a petition May 18 with the Montana Supreme Court taking blame for the filing error that put his client back in jail.

Van de Wetering said Christensen’s case is novel and its appeal worthy of being heard.

Christensen was convicted of 22 felonies, including negligent homicide, for over-prescribing opioids to his patients. He was sentenced in February to 20 years in prison, with 10 years suspended.

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