Justice With Dignity - Committee to Remember Kimberly Rogers

Kimberly Rogers Inquest Alerts

MD believes Rogers took her own life
by Keith Lacey
Special to The Globe and Mail

Tuesday, October 22, 2002 Print Edition, Page A10

SUDBURY, ONT. -- The doctor of Kimberly Rogers, the woman who died last year while under house arrest for welfare fraud, told a coroner's jury yesterday he believes his patient took her own life.

Dr. Robert Clendenning testified yesterday that a high concentration of the prescription drug amitriptyline, an antidepressant and migraine medication, as well as an empty pill bottle that police found at the woman's bed, provided strong evidence she committed suicide.

"I think the empty bottle speaks for itself," said Dr. Clendenning, who had treated Ms. Rogers since 1996.

"I think she emptied the bottle, and the high level of concentration speaks of a large number [of pills] being ingested," he said. "She ended up with three or four times the concentration considered lethal. As to why, I don't think we'll ever know."

The doctor said he warned Ms. Rogers repeatedly not to use more than the 300- milligram prescribed dosage, he said.

The inquest had heard that Ms. Rogers had secretly stockpiled 1,350 of the antidepressant pills over a 10-week period before she died.

Yesterday, the doctor said that he believed that Ms. Rogers understood his instructions and that he never had any fear she would take more than he prescribed.

"She was an intelligent women, and she understood me," he said.

Ms. Rogers had been sentenced to six months of house arrest after pleading guilty to theft over $5,000 for collecting $14,000 in welfare benefits while on student loans.

She died in early August, 2001. Her boyfriend found her body in the sweltering heat of her apartment.

Dr. Clendenning confirmed that Ms. Rogers suffered from numerous ailments, including regular migraine headaches, panic attacks, insomnia and depression.




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