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Ex-USC dean blames mental illness for drug use

June 8, 2018

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The former dean of the University of Southern California medical school is blaming mental illness for his drug use and partying with young criminals.

KABC-TV says Dr. Carmen Puliafito testified Thursday at a state medical board hearing that will determine whether he’ll lose his medical license.

Puliafito gave up his dean’s post in 2016 and was fired from the USC faculty the next year after the Los Angeles Times reported on his behavior.

Puliafito has acknowledged using methamphetamine while he was dean. The Los Angeles Times reported that he partied with criminals and was in the room when a 21-year-old prostitute overdosed.

At the hearing, Puliafito blamed his behavior on bipolar disorder. Puliafito also says he’s been in rehab and hasn’t used any illicit drugs for a year.

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