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Friday, April 5, 2013

Look, I Don't Generally Think People Ought to Go to Prison for Drug Crimes

Posted by on Fri, Apr 5, 2013 at 12:36 PM

But then there are cases like this one, which comes as a statement from the US attorney's office, where incarceration seems more than fair:

A 33-year-old nurse from Anacortes, Washington pleaded guilty today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to tampering with consumer products and acquiring a controlled substance by fraud or misrepresentation, announced U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan. ERIN LINVOG, a former nurse at Fidalgo Care Center & Rosario Assisted Living, faces up to ten years in prison when sentenced by U.S. District Judge Richard A. Jones on July 12, 2013.

According to the facts admitted in the plea agreement, in June 2010, LINVOG began working at the Rosario Assisted Living Center, an elder care facility in Anacortes, Washington, that offers skilled nursing and hospice care to terminally ill patients. LINVOG became credentialed as a registered nurse in November 2011. Sometime in late 2011, LINVOG began stealing narcotics from the facility for her own use. Using her position and authority as a nurse, she requested and received orders for morphine from pharmacies on behalf of Rosario patients, but then diverted entire bottles of narcotics rather than properly logging them into the assigned medicine carts. Moreover, in multiple instances admitted in the plea agreement, LINVOG removed liquid morphine from medicine bottles for her own use, and replaced the missing morphine with tap water, before returning the tampered bottles back to the facility’s medicine carts, where they could have been, and at times were, administered to patients.

The morphine was intended to alleviate the pain of various elderly patients in end-of-life care. LINVOG’s conduct meant that patients near the end of their life were receiving inadequate amounts of medicine to treat their pain and discomfort, and that medical staff did not have a clear picture of the appropriate dosage – since the morphine on hand was diluted. The conduct created the risk that patients could be overdosed if treated with non-diluted medicine, as well as the risk they would suffer needlessly in their final days.


Comments (8) RSS

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bleedingheartlibertarian 1
Well, I wouldn't call this a "drug crime" so much as a "stealing shit" crime. And an aggravated one at that, given the suffering that it caused.
Posted by bleedingheartlibertarian on April 5, 2013 at 12:40 PM · Report this
What @1 said. Also, this is not a non-violent crime. Administering unconsented to medical treatment can be considered battery.
Posted by MRM on April 5, 2013 at 12:57 PM · Report this
Karlheinz Arschbomber 3
She should be hooked up to an IV drip from a selection of bottles - see if she gets plain old unsterilized tap water, or a big hurkin' dose of morphine. Maybe toss in some Grey Poupon.
Posted by Karlheinz Arschbomber on April 5, 2013 at 1:02 PM · Report this
Isn't this the plot of "The Third Man"?
Posted by Pope Buck I on April 5, 2013 at 2:10 PM · Report this
Oh, I wouldn't send the perp to prison for this. Just drag them behind a pickup until they shut up and leave them by the side of the road.
Posted by tiktok on April 5, 2013 at 2:29 PM · Report this
Dougsf 6
@4 That totally was one of the plot connection in that film. Also, and episode of Archer.
Posted by Dougsf on April 5, 2013 at 3:13 PM · Report this
Chefgirl 7
Also, Dexter's first kill was over something like this...
Posted by Chefgirl on April 5, 2013 at 5:05 PM · Report this
mr. herriman 8
yeah, i wouldn't call this a drug crime. this is patient abuse, theft, fraud, cruelty, tampering, etc etc - why would you call it a drug crime any more than you would call, say, robbing a bank to get money for drugs a drug crime? sure it's a factor, but only as motive.
Posted by mr. herriman on April 7, 2013 at 1:41 AM · Report this

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