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Affect of Morphine/Ativan on perception

Posted by Julio O. Garcia on August 9, 1999, at 17:28:43

I am investigating an attempted murder case where the suspect stabs
his victm prior to robbing her. The victim is hospitalized and given morphine while in
the emergency room. A few hours later she is shown a photo lineup. Notes taken
show that she is a bit sleepy, though she appears alert and is responsive to questions.
The attorney I work for is representing one of two suspects. He was picked out of
the photo lineup but he is adament that he did not stab or rob the victim.

The client refused a plea bargain so we are doing all we can to question
the strength of the DA's case. One of the pieces of evidence is the victim's
identification of the suspect. We know that she was under the influence of
morphine. So we wonder if this might not have had some affect on her ability to
identifly the suspect.

As I already indicated, the nurse's notes show that she was responsive to questions
and was alert, albeit a bit sleepy. She received a dose of morphine sulfate at 2230
hours and again 2400. She was shown the photo lineup at 2300 hours.

I also discovered that sometime during the daytime she was given Ativan. could this
have affected the way morphine would normally affect the patient.

Julio O. Garcia
Investigator, ADO.




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