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Grand jury charges two Carthage Area Hospital nurses with stealing drugs

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A Carthage Area Hospital nurse has been indicted on 69 charges, including nine felonies, for allegedly falsifying records to steal drugs from the hospital, while a grand jury charged a second nurse with 24 misdemeanors for similar actions.

Emilia D. Tehonica, 33, of 33 Madison St., West Carthage, faces nine felony counts of first-degree falsifying business records and 20 misdemeanor counts each of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud, fifth-degree criminal possession of stolen property and petit larceny.

The charges were contained in a grand jury indictment handed up Thursday in Jefferson County Court.

It is alleged that between April 11, 2011, and Oct. 26 Ms. Tehonica, a registered nurse, made false entries into the hospital’s automated medication dispensing system by entering an invalid reason for dispensing controlled substances in an attempt to conceal that she was stealing the drugs. It is further alleged that she dispensed more controlled substances from the system that called for in valid dispensing orders.

According to the indictment, she did so to obtain morphine, Percocet, Vicodin and Ativan IV, all pain medications.

The grand jury also determined that there was not evidence to indict Joseph D. Margrey, 32, of 120 S. School St., Carthage, on any felonies, but did return a prosecutor’s information charging him with eight misdemeanor counts each of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud, fifth-degree criminal possession of stolen property and petit larceny. No further information was contained in the prosecutor’s information, but Mr. Margrey, a licensed practical nurse, was charged along with Ms. Tehonica in November with stealing medications following a joint investigation by state police and the state’s Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement, Department of Health.

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