SPRINGFIELD – Officials with the Illinois State Police (ISP) announce the conviction of Tracy Long, age 32, of Pekin, Illinois, for Unlawful Acquisition of a Controlled Substance, a Class 4 Felony. Long plead guilty to the offense on November 30 in Woodford County.
During August and September of 2015 Long was working as a nurse at Maple Lawn Healthcare in Eureka, Illinois. Long reported that she administered Alprazolam and Hydrocodone to residents of Maple Lawn on September 4, 2015. A review of surveillance video revealed that Long had not entered the rooms of the residents for several hours before or after the time she claimed to have administered the medication. When confronted by ISP Medicaid Fraud Control Bureau (MFCB) investigators about the reporting inaccuracies, Long admitted to falsifying the reports and that she stole the narcotics for personal use.
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“The misuse of opioid based prescription drugs is a serious national problem,” stated ISP Director Leo P. Schmitz. “Educational initiatives and aggressive law enforcement efforts combined with sentences which mandate substance abuse evaluation and treatment are necessary for fighting this growing epidemic,” he continued.
Investigators from the MFCB routinely provide presentations to Administrators and Directors of Nursing (DON) at long term care facilities where drug diversion cases can be prevalent. These presentations give the DONs tips on how to properly secure, account for, and monitor those who have access to the variety of narcotics utilized daily at any given facility.
"More Americans today die from drug overdoses than from car accidents or incidents involving fire arms," said Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan. "It is critical that we continue law enforcement efforts to police the availability of opioid drugs in our communities and provide treatment to those fighting addiction."
Long was sentenced to 24 months of probation, 30 hours of community service, and was ordered to pay for fees associated with the case. Long was also ordered to undergo a substance abuse evaluation and treatment program and was further ordered not to work in any position that gives her access to controlled substances.
This conviction is the culmination of an ISP MFCB investigation. Once the investigation was completed, the case was referred to the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Bureau for prosecution.