Police investigating stolen prescription meds from retirement home

JONESBORO,AR (KAIT) - Several residents from a  local retirement home been victims of medication theft. Over the past few months, several police reports were filed with the Jonesboro Police Department that shows resident's Hydrocodone pills are being stolen from their room.

The first incident occurred earlier in April, when a resident of the South Wind Heights Independent Senior Living Community said someone had stolen his brand new prescription of Hydrocodone from his apartment. According to the police report, he said the bottle had been filled and he had not taken any out.

"We have had severalvictims of prescription medication theft right now that is the drug of choice," said Lyle Waterworth with Jonesboro Police.

After that incident, four similar reports were filed in May with the local police department. Just last week, another report was filed were the victim said his medication was taken from his room in his security box.

 Waterworth said it'snot unusual that older residents have become the targets of prescriptionmedication theft.

"Sometimes they have a larger number of medications be it anarcotic or be it something else," he said.

But there are ways to keep your medication safe.

"Keep them in asecure location, keep them in the same room or if you have people coming intoyour home that you feel like might be taking your medication," Waterworth said.

"Always keep a pill count and keep a count of your prescriptions."

Timeline of Stolen Meds

4/10:Resident said an unknown person stole his brand newprescription of Hydrocodone from his apartment.

4/15: Theft of 5 Hydrocodone and 2 Oxycodone pain pills outof a purse

4/24: Broke in apt and stole prescription medication (about15 pills)

4/29: Stole 30 Hydrocodone pills from apartment

5/1: Resident was missing a bottle of 60 Hydrocodone pillsfrom mail delivery.

5/28: Resident said about 10 Hydrocodone went missing from security box

 

"They are depriving those people of needed medication," Waterworth said.

"We don't want that to happen we want the people who needthe medication to get the medication and use what they need," he said.

Waterworth said it important for residents to discard any unnecessary medication.

"If you are throughwith a prescription and you don't have any need for the prescription anyfurther, don't try to save it and continue it because that just leaves moreroom for error," he said.

We reached out to South Wind Height and Communication Specialist Rick McNeal released astatement saying:

  "We are aware of the situation at South Wind Heights, and Holiday Retirement is fully cooperating with the investigation by local authorities. While Holiday Retirement does not comment on open investigations, we are fully committed to ensuring the well-being and safety of our residents."

Waterworth said if a resident suspects a person is stealing they shouldtry to keep an eye on the. 

"Don't let that person be alone in a room with your medications," he said.

Waterworth encourages the community to  use the drop box at the Jonesboro PoliceDepartment to discard of any unneeded medication.

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