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Colorado surgical technician charged with drug offenses

A former Colorado hospital employee was arrested on some rather hefty allegations. According to police officers, the surgical technician had, at one point, swapped out patients' medications for different substances. He is currently still behind bars for the alleged drug offenses.

The 28-year-old surgical tech was employed at a different hospital for a brief period of time back in 2013. His time there came to an abrupt end when, after less than a month, he was put on leave while an investigation into his behavior was conducted. When it was ultimately determined that he had tried to replace a syringe filled with a powerful pain medication with a plain syringe of saline, he was terminated. Although the hospital reported the incident to the Drug Enforcement Agency, they did not actually notify any of the 500 patients who might have been affected during that period.

In 2015, he was fired from a second hospital for similar allegations of removing pain killers meant for patients and replacing them with different substances. One other Colorado hospital and another located in a different state claim that they also employed the technician and are now offering HIV and hepatitis testing to patients. However, there is no indication that patients at those hospitals might have been affected or that he was fired from them at any point during his employment periods.

Although these drug offenses are still mere allegations, a Colorado judge has already ordered that the accused individual be placed in a drug treatment program. His bail has been set at $25,000. While these allegations are currently quite severe, the defendant must still be considered innocent under the law. No person can be found guilty of a crime unless a prosecutor is able to definitively prove that every aspect of his or her criminal charges are both true and viable.

Source: NBC San Diego, "Surgical Tech Accused of Swapping Syringes Worked at Scripps Green", R. Stickney, Feb. 22, 2016

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