MARS, Pa. — A Butler County dentist is facing charges for allegedly being intoxicated while working at his Adams Township office.
Police were called to Refresh Dental Management in Mars in March. Officers arrived and said they found Dr. Gregory Bellotti smelling of alcohol and intoxicated.
According to the criminal complaint, Bellotti admitted to police that he drank a bottle of vodka at lunch.
Bellotti was charged at the end of July, because police said his own staff members were so concerned on March 23 that they called 911 to report his "altered level of consciousness."
The report showed, he was scheduled to see 14 patients that day and did treat eight of them his co-workers realized something was wrong and stepped in.
However, in an email to Channel 11, the Professional Dental Alliance said, "At no point, did he work with any patients after returning to the office that afternoon."
Professional Dental Alliance said Bellotti was immediately from his job. He was also reported to the State Board of Dentistry, the statement said.
The state has temporarily suspended his license.
According to documents filed with that suspension, Bellotti was the only dentist working that day and he was found sleeping in a dental chair in a rarely used examination room around 2:30 p.m.
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Police said Bellotti appeared to be confused and was unable to do simple tasks or answer questions.
The dentist was taken to a hospital and his medical records show he was diagnosed with "acute alcohol intoxication" and found to have a blood alcohol level of .418 percent, which is a little more than five times the legal driving limit.
Channel 11 checked with the national institute on alcohol abuse and found it classifies anything over .3 percent poses a "significant risk of death" for the drinker.
Police said Bellotti's reckless conduct placed or may have placed the patients in danger of death.
Professional Dental Alliance said Bellotti had been employed since October, 2016. Their statement said, “Until the March 23 incident, we had no evidence that he acted inappropriately during his time here, and we are confident that patient care was never compromised.”
The statement went on to say, "Nothing is more important to Professional Dental Alliance than the safety and security of the patients in our care. We were shocked and saddened by this incident, and we will never tolerate behavior that jeopardizes patient safety or the trust our patients place in us. We continue to cooperate with the authorities on their investigation."
Belotti has a formal arraignment scheduled for early September.