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Hospice employee arrested for falsifying prescriptions

The Picayune Police Department recently arrested a Poplarville woman who was employed at a local hospice care center for allegedly having prescriptions filled in different patients name according to Assistant Chief Jeremy Magri.

Narcotics Detectives met with the complainant on October 19, 2018, at approximately 8:51 a.m. After hearing the allegations, detectives then interviewed the suspect, identified as Mindy Welford, age 39, of 134 Levelle Odom Road, Poplarville, MS. It was learned through further investigation that Welford would slip extra prescriptions into her regular stack of prescriptions at her bi-weekly meeting for a doctor to sign. Welford would then alledgedly fill the prescriptions at several different pharmacies according to Magri.

Detectives searched the company car assigned to Welford. During the search of the vehicle, they found three loose Hydrocodone pills under the driver’s side seat and a black bag containing a large amount of pill bottles with several different patient’s names.

Additionally, detectives found a notebook on the front seat of the vehicle that contained a list of names of patients and when Welford could refill their prescriptions. Also inside the notebook, detectives found 13 unfilled prescriptions to different patients. A search of Welford’s purse revealed a prescription bottle in the name of one of her patient’s containing 72 white pills identified as Hydrocodone. Under another seat in the vehicle, detectives located 4 more empty prescription bottles for Hydrocodone and Oxycodone in different patient’s names.

At this point, Welford was transported to the Criminal Justice Center. Detectives then searched the black bag and located 26 prescription bottles for Hydrocodone in different patient’s names, two ceramic pipes, and a straw commonly used to ingest narcotics. One of the prescription bottles contained 14 pills identified as Hydrocodone, 2 Suboxone packs, and several empty Suboxone packs. Detectives then found a plastic baggie controlling a large amount of Crystal Methamphetamine. In all, Magri said a total of 126 Hydrocodone pills were recovered.

Detectives also located a large quantity of prescription paperwork from several pharmacies where the prescriptions were picked up by Welford. At this time, detectives met with the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Narcotics Division and obtained a search warrant for Welford’s residence. During the search, they located 8 more prescription bottles in different patient’s names scattered throughout the residence according to Magri.

Welford was then booked for Fraud and Acquistion of a Controlled Substance, Trafficking a Controlled Substance, Possession of a Controlled Substance (felony), and Possession of Paraphernalia.

Magri stated that Chief Bryan Dawsey would like to thank the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Office in assisting the Picayune Narcotics Detectives with the search warrant.


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