Prince saw longtime, experienced family care physician day before death

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ABC's Brandi Hitt has the latest developments in the investigation into the death of music icon Prince. (Matt Sayles/Invision/AP, File)

A Minnesota doctor questioned by investigators in Prince's death is an experienced family care physician who worked for a Minneapolis-area health care system until recently.

A search warrant revealed Tuesday that Dr. Michael Todd Schulenberg, 46, treated Prince on April 7 and April 20 and prescribed him medications, though it didn't specify which or say whether Prince took them. Prince was found dead April 21 in his suburban Minneapolis home.

A law enforcement official has told The Associated Press that investigators are looking into whether Prince died from an overdose and whether a doctor was prescribing him drugs in the weeks before his death. The law enforcement official has been briefed on the investigation and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Investigators interviewed Schulenberg and searched a suburban Minneapolis hospital where he worked, according to the warrant.

No one answered the door Wednesday at the Schulenberg home in Excelsior, a southwestern Minneapolis suburb just a few minutes' drive from Prince's Paisley Park compound. The blinds were drawn and the two-story house was dark, though a ceiling fan could be seen revolving inside.

Several neighbors either declined to comment on Schulenberg or said the development was new and that they didn't know the doctor.

Schulenberg was a primary care physician for North Memorial Medical Center until at least April 21, but he has since left the job. Lesa Bader, a spokeswoman for the health care system, said personnel records are private and she couldn't comment on why Schulenberg no longer works at their Minnetonka clinic. She said she also couldn't discuss any of his previous patients.

Schulenberg is the second doctor whose name has surfaced in the investigation. Last week, a lawyer for California addiction specialist Dr. Howard Kornfeld told reporters that Prince's representatives had contacted Kornfeld seeking help April 20, the day before the superstar was found dead.

Kornfeld was not able to immediately fly to Minnesota so he sent his son on his behalf. Andrew Kornfeld was carrying a small amount of the prescription drug buprenorphine. Mauzy said Andrew Kornfeld planned to give that drug to a Minnesota doctor who was scheduled to see Prince.

Schulenberg's name does not appear on a list of Minnesota doctors authorized to treat opioid dependency with the drug buprenorphine, according to a database maintained by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Buprenorphine, also known by its brand name Suboxone, is a medication that helps control drug cravings and withdrawal symptoms. To be certified, doctors are required to undergo an eight-hour training course in addiction medicine.

Schulenberg earned his MBA in health care in 2011 from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul. In a 2012 YouTube video posted by the university, Schulenberg said he was then part of the "leadership group" at Ridgeview Medical Center in Carver County and said his job required him to put in demanding hours.

"As a full-time family physician, that probably demands about 50 hours a week," he said in the video. "I still deliver babies, so I can be called in on an unexpected basis and there goes my evening." Schulenberg described himself in the video as a father of five.

Lisa Steinbauer, a spokeswoman for Ridgeview, said Schulenberg left the health care system in August of 2014.
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