August 31, 2018: Former Home Health Nurse Pleads Guilty to Tampering with Patients' Drugs
GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN – Kristie Ann Mollohan, 42, formerly of Kalamazoo, Michigan, pled guilty before the Hon. Phillip J. Green, U.S. Magistrate Judge, to two counts of tampering with a consumer product. This federal offense prohibits tampering with a drug or other consumer product with reckless disregard for the risk of death or bodily injury and under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the risk of injury or death. Mollohan faces a maximum sentence of 10 years of imprisonment on each count, and she will be required to serve a term of supervised release after any prison term has been completed. U.S. District Judge Gordon J. Quist will sentence Mollohan on a date to be scheduled by the Court.
Mollohan admitted at the plea hearing that, while working as home health nurse in two homes in Allegan and Barry Counties in August 2016, she removed liquid diazepam (valium) from the medication bottles prescribed to three different patients. All three patients were totally incapacitated at the time from serious brain impairment and required twenty-four hour care. Mollohan admitted that she replaced the diazepam with water or saline solution, resulting in the patients’ diazepam containing less than 10% of the declared diazepam concentration in one case, less than 6% of the declared diazepam concentration in the second case, and less than 1% of the declared diazepam concentration in the third case. Mollohan acknowledged that she knew that she put the patients at risk of serious bodily injury or death given that the diazepam was prescribed, in part, to suppress life-threatening seizures. Mollohan further acknowledged that one of the patients suffered a seizure that was likely the result of the patient receiving diluted diazepam. That patient, a minor, died the next day, although the government acknowledges that it cannot prove Mollohan’s conduct resulted in the death.
United States Attorney Andrew Birge emphasized that federal laws play an important role in the delivery of safe food, drugs, and cosmetics. "Cases like this underscore the obvious: tampering with drugs puts the ultimate consumers at real risk of harm."
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Office of Criminal Investigations, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, the Michigan State Police, the Allegan Police Department, and the Barry and Allegan County Prosecutors’ Offices cooperated in the investigation of this matter. Assistant U.S. Attorney Raymond Beckering III prosecuted the case.