Marijuana doctor: "We've got to get out of Mississippi"

By Steve Phillips – bio | email

PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - The retired heart surgeon accused of growing marijuana in Jackson County, will remain in jail for now.

Dr. David Allen made an appearance in circuit court Thursday, trying to get his bond re-instated. The doctor's bond on drug charges was revoked last week following new charges that accuse him of trying to bribe witnesses in the case.

Prosecutors played an audio recording, made by two witnesses who wore an undercover wire during an early December conversation with Dr. Allen. That entire recording was played in Judge Robert Krebs' courtroom Thursday afternoon.

The witnesses are Dr. Allen's sister and brother-in-law, Gail and Rodney Lee.

The former heart surgeon is heard telling them, "We've got to get out of Mississippi."

It was a more subdued Dr. David Allen in court this time around, wearing a yellow jail jump suit; his long tied in a ponytail. Although softer spoken, he still talked with reporters, in this case referring to the law enforcers in the courtroom crowd.

"Do you know what the difference is between me and these people here," Dr. Allen asked reporters. "My entire life was devoted to helping people. My entire life. And these people's entire life is devoted to hurting people."

One of those people he talked about was the lone witness. Narcotics Agent Jackie Trussell talked about the charges that involve bribing witnesses.

"Mr. Allen had contacted two of the witnesses and was trying to get them to leave the state, so they would not testify against him," Trussell testified.

Assistant District Attorney Tonya Hasbrouck questioned the agent about that conversation between Dr. Allen and the witnesses.

"Wanting them to sign an affidavit stating that the police told them to lie and say that he didn't have anything to do with the cultivation or the sales charge," Trussell testified.

The entire conversation between Dr. Allen was recorded, undercover, and that recording played in court.

At one point, Dr. Allen is heard telling the Lee's:  "They're going to drop all the charges and all of us are going to be rich".

He also tells them:  "I can generate money. I can make this all go away."

Rodney Lee is heard saying: "I'm expected to trust you, and hop on a plane and go to California?"

And near the end of the conversation, Dr. Allen is heard telling the Lees:  "This is what God wants you to do."

Dr. Allen's defense attorney tried his best to pick apart the damaging statements, by questioning the drug agent.

"What did he say on the tape that would tell you, me, anybody else in this room, the judge, that he knew what he was asking them to state in a written statement, was false," attorney Matthew Baldridge asked.

The agent indicated the recording speaks for itself.

Judge Robert Krebs asked both attorneys to file summary briefs by the middle of next week.  He promised a swift decision once that paperwork is filed.

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