NY: Hudson woman pleads guilty to stealing painkillers prescribed to elderly patient

Union Leader News –

She replaced some of the oxycodone in the prescription bottle with the baclofen, and gave the stolen oxycodone to a friend to sell, in exchange for $80.

A Hudson woman pleaded guilty in federal court this week to tampering and drug charges, after officials accused her of skimming prescription painkiller drugs intended for an elderly patient.

Kristina Coleman, 40, of Hudson, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Concord to tampering with consumer products and unlawfully obtaining controlled substances, U.S. Attorney Scott Murray announced.

According to court documents and statements made in court, Coleman worked as a pharmacy technician for a retail pharmacy chain in Nashua.

In January 2019, Coleman agreed to deliver two prescriptions to an elderly patient, something which was not part of her ordinary job responsibilities. According to court documents, after the delivery the patient checked her bottles and discovered several pills were missing from her oxycodone prescription.

In addition, some of the pills in the bottle were larger and had a different imprint than the others, and were later determined to be baclofen, a non-scheduled drug described as a muscle relaxant and anti-spasmodic agent.

Court documents indicate Coleman admitted to law enforcement officials she replaced some of the oxycodone in the prescription bottle with the baclofen, and gave the stolen oxycodone to a friend to sell, in exchange for $80.

Court documents show additional investigation revealed Coleman had been taking Suboxone from the pharmacy for her personal use. Documents show Coleman admitted that she had taken a strip a day for her own use for approximately one year.

Coleman is scheduled to be sentenced on January 28, 2021.

“Drug diversion and tampering with consumer products are serious crimes that can endanger the lives of patients,” said Murray in a statement. “When criminals steal controlled substances and replace them with other drugs, patients are not only deprived of needed medicine but also may take a drug that they should not be taking. In some circumstances, this can create serious medical risks.”

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National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators Federal Tax ID: 52-1660752 / DUNS Number: 073539913

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