LOS ANGELES — Casey Kasem’s daughter has the authority to withhold food and fluids from her ailing father, a judge ruled Wednesday.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Daniel S. Murphy reversed a ruling from Monday that stated that Kasem should receive food, fluids and certain medications until after a court-appointed attorney met with the former radio host and his doctors.
Murphy reviewed additional medical records on Wednesday and concluded that Kasem would endure more pain if he was given food or fluids, attorney Troy Martin said. Martin, who represents Kasem’s daughter Kerri, presented the updated information to Murphy during an emergency hearing.
He also presented the judge with documents in which Kasem stated he did not want his life prolonged by food or fluids if he was mentally incapacitated.
“It’s just flat out wrong,” said Steve Haney, an attorney for Kasem’s wife Jean.
Haney said Murphy’s ruling wasn’t based on sworn declarations from doctors and relied on an outdated document in which Casey Kasem said he didn’t want to receive food or fluids if he was incapacitated. As of last week, Kasem still had the ability to communicate nonverbally, Haney said.
Kasem’s wife of 34 years pleaded with the judge to restore food and fluids to her husband, who has a form of dementia. Jean Kasem stormed out of the courtroom after Murphy issued his ruling, according to the New York Daily News, which first reported the decision.
Jean Kasem and her stepdaughter Kerri have been fighting in court since May over Casey Kasem’s care. Murphy has given Kerri Kasem temporary authority to make medical decisions for her father.
Murphy upheld Kerri Kasem’s authority and ruled that Jean Kasem had not acted in her husband’s best interests when she removed him from a California medical facility and took him to a friend’s home in Washington state last month, Martin said.
Haney said Murphy’s comments about Jean Kasem’s decisions were wrong and she took her husband to Washington to be evaluated by a specialist. Her decisions “in no way contributed to his situation,” Haney said.
Casey Kasem remains in critical condition in a Washington hospital. Martin said the former “America’s Top 40” host has not received food or fluids since Friday.
Kerri Kasem and her siblings Julie and Mike have invited Jean Kasem to join them at the hospital for Casey Kasem’s final moments.
Kasem gained fame with his radio music countdown shows, “American Top 40” and “Casey’s Top 40.” He also was the voice of Shaggy in the cartoon “Scooby Doo.”
Anthony McCartney can be reached at http://twitter.com/mccartneyAP