AG's office files third opioid lawsuit against a pharmacy

By Chris Dickerson | Jan 5, 2017


CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey’s office has filed a third lawsuit against a pharmacy claiming it dispensed an inordinate number of prescription opioids.

The latest lawsuit, filed Jan. 4 in Raleigh Circuit Court, says Crab Orchard Pharmacy Inc. provided nearly five million doses of prescription painkillers in just seven years amid significant competition.

Those 4.6 million doses of hydrocodone and oxycodone were filled in a town of 2,678 residents, as well as a county with 32 competing pharmacies and eight medical facilities all licensed to dispense the same drugs.

“Every participant in the supply chain must guard against diversion and abuse,” Morrisey said in a statement. “Every red flag and warning sign must be examined, and this lawsuit demonstrates my commitment to taking appropriate action when stakeholders fail to meet that standard.”

Crab Orchard Pharmacy becomes the third drug store sued in less than a month. Prior lawsuits made similar allegations against Larry’s Drive-in Pharmacy, of Madison in Boone County, and Judy’s Drug Store Inc., of Petersburg in Grant County.

The Crab Orchard lawsuit alleges it failed to identify suspicious prescriptions or determine whether it dispenses a suspicious number of pills.

The eight-count civil complaint charges Crab Orchard Pharmacy with violations of the state’s Controlled Substance Act as well as its Consumer Protection and Credit Act, along with unfair methods of competition, negligence, unjust enrichment, creating a public nuisance and intentional acts and omissions.

The Attorney General seeks an injunction, civil penalties and punitive damages.

Edward Mark Wenger of the AG's office filed the complaint. The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Andrew G. Dimlich.

Raleigh Circuit Court case number 17-C-12

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