Nadine Alexie told the jury that she was vigilant about the medications Smith was taking because she was then studying to be a pharmacy technician. She made lists of drugs Smith was taking, she said, and one such list displayed in court Tuesday showed 18 different medications that included multiple sedatives and opiates.
She said Smith's boyfriend, Howard K. Stern, and Dr. Khristine Eroshevich told her Smith was sick, but she remembered times when Smith was not medicated and seemed fine.
"She would be talking to you and smiling. She would dance," Alexie recalled. "... We would talk and watch TV and read the Bible together."
She also remembered a time when Smith was so involved in making a baby book for her newborn daughter that she refused Stern's orders to take her medication.
Alexie said Stern regularly prompted Smith to take an array of pills left by Eroshevich. After taking the drugs, Smith "would be groggy and drowsy, her speech would be slurred," Alexie said.
Sometimes, she said, Smith became too weak to hold her baby.
Alexie was one of two former nannies who cared for the model and her then-infant daughter in the last months of Smith's life before her drug overdose death. Quethlie Alexie, Nadine's sister-in-law, also worked for Smith for more than three months in the Bahamas.
The two nannies testified in the drug conspiracy trial of Stern, Eroshevich and Dr. Sandeep Kapoor, all of whom have pleaded not guilty. They are not charged with causing Smith's death in 2007.
Both nannies gave similar accounts of finding bloody syringes and cotton balls, and sometimes a burned spoon with liquid, inside a bathroom at the Bahamas home where Smith was staying. Quethlie Alexie testified that she saw Stern and Eroshevich take the model into the bathroom and that when they came out, she saw the syringes and other items.
She also said that after Smith emerged from the bathroom, "she was like, drunk." Alexie, who testified through a Creole interpreter, said Smith "was unable to walk, falling, and was unable to handle her talking. She would laugh."
Alexie, who acknowledged she speaks and understands English but is more comfortable in the Creole dialect, said she did not see what happened in the bathroom because "they had the door closed. I didn't know what went on in there." Nadine Alexie said she also was kept out of the bathroom, but that she saw the same items.
Prosecutors allege that Smith was being injected with excessive amounts of opiates and sedatives. Quethlie Alexie testified that before the three went into the bathroom, "(Stern) would say, 'Baby, come and we'll take our medicine."'
She described finding "ashes from fire" on the bathroom counter and matches or a lighter. Sometimes, she said she found a spoon with liquid and "cotton you would use for a shot."
She said it had blood on it, as did syringes she found.
Smith was weak and suffering from bouts of diarrhea and vomiting during that period, Alexie testified, and the model was consumed by grief over the death of her son, Daniel, just after she gave birth to a daughter in September 2006.
Before Eroshevich arrived, Alexie said Smith could not sleep. She said that after the doctor arrived, Smith "would sleep all day. In the middle of her speaking, she would sleep."
Outside the jury's presence, defense attorneys complained about arrangements by prosecutors to bring not only the nannies, but other family members to Los Angeles to stay in a hotel with them. The group included one husband and six children ranging in age from two to 17.
Deputy District Attorney Renee Rose said she also agreed to relocate at least one of the nannies to a new apartment in the Bahamas and to pay the moving costs, as well as the first and last month's rent. She said it was done for security reasons but did not specify what those were.