WAVELAND, MS (WLOX) - A federal judge has denied bond for a Waveland doctor accused of running an illegal pill mill. According to court documents, Dr. Steve Morris' family lives in Thailand, and he had planned a trip to the country this summer.
Morris has been receiving some type of psychiatric treatment since 2011, which was ordered by the Mississippi State Board of Medical Licensure.
Court documents also show on two separate occasions, Morris was asked to provide a urine sample for drug screening but said he could not provide one, which the judge says he considers to be a refusal.
An Arizona doctor wrote a letter to the federal judge, asking him to allow Morris free on bond. He even offered to be a third party custodian for Morris.
Dr. Mark Rubin told the judge if released, he would allow Morris to work full-time at his medical facility in Arizona but would not allow him to prescribe any medications.
In the letter, Rubin said, "Steve, who may be standing before you at this very moment, is one of the most upstanding and outstanding individuals I have ever known, and I can completely vouch for him with no reservation at all. I urge the Court to trust him and to trust me, and to allow Steve to be released during this, the most shocking and frightening time of his life."
Despite the doctor's plea, the judge ruled Thursday there was no condition of bond that would assure Morris would appear in court. He ruled Morris must stay behind bars until a resolution in the case.
Morris pleaded not guilty to all 57 federal charges against him. Morris, along with the owner of Total Health Solutions, Peggy Laporte and nurse technician, Brittany Spikes, are each charged with one count of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and 56 counts of distributing and dispensing a controlled substance.
Laporte and Spikes are currently out on $25,000 bonds.
The trial for Morris, Laporte and Spikes has been set for July 7. If convicted, all three face more than 500 years in prison.