ALLEGHENY CO., Pa. — An Allegheny County woman was charged with stealing $500,000 worth of suboxone – a powerful drug used to treat opioid addiction – from the pharmacy she worked at.
Attorney General Josh Shapiro said in a release Friday that Rena Schleehauf was a lead pharmacy fill technician at Johnson’s Pharmaceutical Services in Allegheny County. Her job was overseeing inventory and ordering medications there.
Since the pharmacy works directly with assisted living facilities, it was extremely rare for the company to order suboxone.
Over the course of three years, investigators said Schleehauf stole 2,206 boxes (66,180) units of suboxone and has since admitted to doing it. The total cost: more than $518,000.
According to a criminal complaint, when the drugs would arrive at the pharmacy, she would put the boxes of suboxone in her purse or car and then hide or destroy the paperwork to avoid getting caught.
However, the pharmacy’s owner started to notice the missing drugs and some irregularities with the company’s orders, so he notified West Mifflin police.
Officials said detectives and the Attorney General’s office questioned Schleehauf, who then admitted to the whole thing. She told authorities she was stockpiling the suboxone for her own use.
Her husband even admitted to using some. Detectives then found hundreds of empty boxes of the drug in her home.
Schleehauf was arraigned Friday morning on five counts of drugs and theft charges. Her preliminary hearing is scheduled for next week but may be postponed.
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