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UPDATE: Calif. Attorney General Jerry Brown defends prosecution in Anna Nicole death


howard-k-stern1When former Playboy model and television star Anna Nicole Smith died at age 39 two years ago of an accidental overdose of prescription drugs, questions arose about how she obtained the substances that killed her. Last month, California Attorney General Jerry Brown gave his answer when he brought charges accusing Smith’s former companion, Howard K. Stern, and two doctors of plying her with drugs.

On Tuesday, it was Stern’s turn to give his version of what happened, following media reports that he has no intention of negotiating with prosecutors and pleading guilty to a lesser charge in return for lenient sentencing.  Speaking outside of court, where Stern was to have been arraigned, Stern’s attorney said his client is innocent of the “baseless allegations made against him.”

“Howard loved Anna Nicole with all of his heart and would have never done anything intentional to harm her,” said Stern’s attorney, Steve Sadow. He also took a shot at Brown, saying the former California governor, widely seen as a potential gubernatorial candidate again next year, “has chosen to sacrifice Anna’s medical privacy to further his own political agenda.”

Brown fired back later in the day, calling Sadow’s comments a “smoke and mirrors tactic.”