Doc pleads not guilty to medicinal cocaine theft

Posted: Updated:
By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX (AP) -- A Scottsdale surgeon accused of stealing medicinal cocaine from a surgical business has pleaded not guilty in the case.

Maricopa County prosecutors say Dr. Paul Holden entered his plea Thursday. His next scheduled court appearance is Sept. 17.

The 41-year-old Holden allegedly broke into the North Valley Surgical Center on July 9 and was later arrested on suspicion of burglary.

Holden works in the same building as the surgical center.

Scottsdale police say Holden allegedly stole five boxes of medicinal cocaine after surgery center staffers counted their inventory. They reported damage to the lock on the cabinet holding the drugs.

A cleaning woman says Holden asked her for help opening the pharmacy door, saying he didn't have the keys. 

Police say Holden was later identified on video surveillance footage.