Arkansas: Texarkana Physician Found Guilty of Prescribing a Controlled Substance Without a Legitimate Medical Purpose

A federal jury convicted a Texarkana Doctor yesterday on two counts of Distribution of a Schedule II Controlled Substance Without an Effective Prescription and two counts of Distribution of a Schedule V Controlled Substance Without an Effective Prescription.

According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Little Rock District Office (LRDO), Tactical Diversion and Diversion Groups initiated an investigation into Dr. Lonnie Joseph Parker, age 58, of Texarkana, Arkansas in 2018 after receiving complaints from local law enforcement about a suspected pill mill and possible overdose death of a patient. Investigators analyzed prescription drug monitoring data attributed to Dr. Parker, and the investigation revealed Dr. Parker was an over-prescriber of controlled substances, to include opioids, benzodiazepines, and promethazine with codeine cough syrup in the Texarkana area. In the two-year period analyzed, Dr. Parker prescribed approximately 1.2 million dosage units of opioid pain medications, including oxycodone, hydrocodone and fentanyl, to approximately 1,508 patients (approximately 847 dosage units per patient). Dr. Parker also prescribed approximately 16 gallons of Promethazine with Codeine cough syrup to approximately 29 patients during the same time frame. The prescriptions included narcotics written in combination with sedatives, creating a high risk of addiction and overdose to patients.