Former Jefferson Regional tech's drug swapping hearing waived
By Patrick Cloonan
Published: Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013, 3:56 a.m.
A former Jefferson Regional Medical Center pharmacy technician waived her preliminary hearing Wednesday on charges stemming from an alleged swapping of other drugs for oxycodone.
Cheryl L. Ashcraft, 43, of New Eagle remains free on her own recognizance pending a formal arraignment March 26 at 11 a.m. at the Allegheny County Courthouse.
Ashcraft faces a felony charge of prohibited acts and misdemeanor counts of recklessly endangering another person, prohibited acts-possession of oxycodone, and theft by unlawful taking.
A second misdemeanor count of reckless endangerment was added to the complaint prior to the hearing before Magisterial District Judge Pat A. Capolupo in Pleasant Hills.
It reportedly was added to cover a “Jane Doe” patient at the Jefferson Hills hospital. An earlier reckless endangerment count was filed to cover a “John Doe” patient there.
According to the criminal complaint prepared by Andrew Sakmar, an agent for the state Attorney General's office, Ashcraft substituted Methimazole, an antithyroid drug, or Ondansetron, a drug given to deal with nausea caused during radiation therapy, for oxycodone in hundreds of individual or “blister packs” given to patients.
The drug swaps allegedly occurred between June and October of last year.
Ashcraft's hearing was postponed from last week because she did not have an attorney. She was represented Wednesday by attorney Hannah Akintoye from the county public defender's office.
Assistant district attorney Evan Lowry is prosecuting the case. Attorney Robert G. DelGreco Jr. represented the hospital and said he was satisfied with the waiver.
The hospital also may face civil action, reportedly from at least 15 patients or families of patients who have retained Pittsburgh attorney Brendan B. Lupetin.
A hospital spokeswoman attending Wednesday's hearing said she could not comment on ongoing litigation.
Patrick Cloonan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1967, or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Mon Yough Chamber’s ‘Lunch and Learn’ uncovers Carnegie ‘gem’
- Salvation Army donations lag in Western Pennsylvania
- McKeesport club has railroad display on track for holiday
- Port Vue council set to join host fee legal fight
- McKeesport Area examines harassment policies
- Afterschool Buddy shares message in Duquesne
- McKeesport-area school boards reorganize
- McKeesport council approves budget with no tax hike
- Propel student joins CLO cast
- Segina, Malinchak recognized for service to McKeesport
- Area towns mark holiday events