Albion pharmacy dispensed millions of opioids

A Killer Among Us

ALBION, Mich. (WOOD) — An Albion pharmacy is under new ownership while the two men who operated it previously remain under federal investigation. 

John C. Shedd and Terry Tooley, both pharmacists, ran Parks Drug Store on Superior Street in Albion before new owners took over.

Shedd and Tooley are accused of dispensing “massive” amounts of widely-abused drugs, mostly opioids, while ignoring multiple red flags about the legitimacy of the prescriptions. 

A federal forfeiture complaint alleges that the pair “knew or should have known that the prescriptions were not issued for legitimate medical purposes.” 

According to the document filed in U.S. District Court, Parks Drug Store filled more than 130,000 prescriptions for controlled substances from 2012 to 2016.

That’s almost five times the amount of prescriptions dispensed at another Albion pharmacy during the same time frame.

The complaint contends that Parks also filled more controlled substance prescriptions than Meijer Pharmacy in Kalamazoo, a city that has two major hospitals and ten times the population of Albion. 

The pills Park dispensed included: 

•    more than 3.6 million dosage units of hydrocodone
•    more than 1.2 million dosage units of oxycodone
•    nearly 738,000 units of methadone

Thousands of prescriptions for Adderall were also filled at the pharmacy, which is detailed in the 40-page complaint.

Federal prosecutors said Shedd and Tooley dispensed prescriptions written by numerous doctors who were later suspended by the State Board of Medicine or charged with crimes.

Michigan’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs found 24 percent of the controlled substance prescriptions dispensed by Parks were written by Dr. Horace Davis. He’s currently in federal prison for illegally prescribing opioid painkillers and committing healthcare fraud, crimes for which he was sentenced in May 2017.

In addition, Shedd and Tooley allegedly filled prescriptions for “the same widely abused drugs in similar quantities from the same doctors which indicated that the doctor was writing in a factory like manner.” 

The complaint also claims that the prescribing doctors were located a long distance way, and that the customers, who paid with cash or combinations of cash and Medicaid,  would travel long distances to the Albion pharmacy.

Now, the U.S. Attorney’s Office wants to take control of more than $1.2 million in Parks Drug Store savings that was previously seized by the Internal Revenue Service in January 2017.

On Thursday, details of the investigation became public and federal documents were obtained by 24 Hour News 8.

According to John C. Shedd, new owners took over the pharmacy this week, so it is now back open to customers after being raided last January. Last month, Shedd and Tooley each agreed to pay a $25,000 fine and have their licenses suspended for six months and a day.

A judge has been assigned to the case, but no future court dates have been set.

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