AR: Texarkana doctor convicted of over-prescribing pain pills

A federal jury convicted a Texarkana physician on Friday on two counts of distributing pain medications without a prescription.

Dr. Lonnie Joseph Parker, 58, of Texarkana, Ark., was an over-prescriber of controlled substances in a two-year period, according to an investigation initiated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Little Rock District Office (LRDO).

The two-year investigation was launched after complaints to local law enforcement about a suspected pill mill and the possible overdose death of a patient were reported.

According to the analyzed prescription drug monitoring data, in two years Parker over-prescribed controlled substances of opioid pain medications, including oxycodone, hydrocodone and fentanyl to approximately 1,508 patients.

Additionally, Parker prescribed promethazine with codeine cough syrup.

Some prescriptions were narcotics written in combination with sedatives which create a high risk of addiction and overdose.

Parker’s sentencing will be at a later date, and he faces up to 20 years in prison. In addition, Parker faces monetary penalties and a supervised release.

The organizations involved in the investigation included the DEA, Little Rock District Office (LRDO), Tactical Diversion and Diversion Group, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Texarkana Police Department, and the United States Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS).

Assistant United States Attorney Anne Gardner and Assistant United States Attorney Graham Jones prosecuted the case for the United States.

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