A source has told CBS News that the defense team for a former football coach charged in the death of one of his players is planning to claim the amphetamine medication Adderall, prescribed for the player's attention deficit disorder, could be to blame for his death.
Lawyers for Coach Jason Stinson, CBS News confirmed, plan to use the expert testimony of a former Kentucky medical examiner who will say Adderall is the likely cause of death.
Stinson, former coach of a Pleasure Ridge Park, Ky., school, is on trial for reckless homicide and wanton endangerment in the death of Max Gilpin. Gilpin, a 15-year-old player, collapsed during football practice while running in 94-degree heat last August. He died three days later of complications from heatstroke
CBS News correspondent Hari Sreenivasan reported on "The Early Show" Thursday that a former player of coach Stinson, David Englert, testified Wednesday that during the practice Stinson wouldn't stop until someone quit.
Englert said, "(Stinson) was just going off on me, so I just ended up quitting the team."
Prosecutors claim Stinson made players run grueling drills, denied players water and forced them to keep running wind sprints.
Prosecutor Leland Hulbert said, "When he took his last steps on the field, Maxwell Gilpin was still doing what the coach asked him to do. He was running."
Dr. Alanna Levine, of The American Academy of Pediatrics, said on "The Early Show" Thursday, it's OK for kids to participate in sports and take Adderall if they have been screened by a physician for safe use of the drug.
The most common side effects of Adderall are decreased appetite, insomnia, tics, heart palpitations and high blood pressure.
She added sudden cardiac death from the drug has gotten a lot of attention. However, she said The American Academy of Pediatrics believes the incidence of deaths among children on medications for ADD and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder(ADHD) is no different than the incidence of cardiac death among the general population.
"Any time we put a patient on one of these medications, we always screen them for cardiac disease first," she said.
Levine added that the screening process includes a detailed history of the patient, including arrhythmia or sudden cardiac death in the family, and a cardiac exam. If anything comes up during those examinations, she said, she would refer the patient to a cardiologist for further evaluation.
Copyright 2009 CBS. All rights reserved.