A call to police regarding a domestic disturbance has landed a Georgia physician in deep trouble for other matters, according to media reports and records of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office. The man’s arrest on apparent drug charges occurred when responding police found him allegedly in possession of 81 Oxycodone pills, per the sheriff’s office. The arrest raises concerns because the doctor has been working as a prominent drug abuse specialist for many years in the Atlanta area.
Those concerns are heightened by the fact that, in 1990, the Georgia Medical Board had placed his license on probation for seven years on charges that he diverted painkillers to his own use through prescriptions written to family members. In addition, he is currently the director of Talbott Recovery, a prominent drug abuse treatment facility. The CEO of the facility announced that the doctor had been placed on administrative leave after the arrest.
To add to the ironical nature of the allegations, the accused is a board-certified addiction specialist who has been practicing for 31 years. The specific drug charges are unclear from the media reports, but Oxycodone violations are generally going to be classified as felonies. That fact exposes the accused to not only losing his license but also to a potential prison sentence. Defense counsel will first look to the circumstances surrounding the arrest and will also determine whether the accused had legal possession of the pills.
However, it does not appear that the accused will contest the drug charges. Immediately after the arrest, he entered a treatment facility, according to the sheriff’s office. If the doctor is suffering from personal addiction problems, that immediate response to the crisis is a very important personal decision that also serves to put in place a strong defense strategy under Georgia law and procedure, which will argue in favor of probation and treatment. It is probably also critical in this case that there are no reports of excess prescriptions or otherwise attempting to transfer illegal drugs to third persons.
Source: apalachtimes.com, “Doc’s troubles mount after oxycodone arrest“, LOIS SWOBODA, May 24, 2017