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Three area nurses accused of stealing painkillers

Staff report • May 11, 2007 at 11:39 AM

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has arrested three area nurses in connection with a rash of prescription drug thefts. The nurses were employed at two local nursing homes and a mental health group home.

The TBI says Melinda Henegar, a registered nurse, is accused of stealing medication at a Kingsport nursing home. The investigation revealed medications were taken after patients died or were released from the facility. She is charged with five counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud and was released on a $7,500 bond pending an arraignment hearing.

Henegar also has charges pending against her in Hawkins County in connection with her work at a Church Hill nursing home.

Melisia J. Potter, a licensed practical nurse from Elizabethton, has been arrested on three counts - obtaining a controlled substance by fraud, theft of property under $500, and willful abuse, neglect or exploitation of a dependent adult. Potter is accused of stealing medications and supplies that were supposed to be given to residents of a Johnson City nursing home she worked for. She is being held on a $25,000 bond.

Angela Dawn Ray, a direct support staff care giver from Johnson City, has been charged with obtaining controlled substances by fraud. Ray is accused of stealing pain medications from a cancer patient she was caring for while employed by an independent agency that contracts services to the Tennessee Department of Mental Retardation Services. She was released on a $10,000 bond.

All arrests involved the theft of hydrocodone, oxycodone, Lortab or Percocet.

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