Ex-nurse to be sentenced in painkiller tampering
Published - 06/12/15 - 12:58 PM | 0 0 comments | 28 28 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A former nurse at the La Jolla Women’s Surgery Center will be sentenced Aug. 21 after she pleaded guilty to siphoning off a painkiller used to treat patients.

Sarah Elizabeth Martin, of San Diego, is free on her own recognizance and said at the hearing she would enter a drug treatment program. Her plea agreement specifies that she complete six months of residential drug treatment.

Martin, 25, worked at the clinic at 9850 Genesee Ave. from October of 2014 to March 24 as a registered nurse. Part of her responsibilities involved administering a generic drug for Demerol, but she appropriated some of the drug and replaced it with saline solution.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Melanie Pierson said June 12 that there was no evidence of harm to any patient. It was estimated that the adulterated drug was administered to as many as 250 patients.

Martin faces a maximum sentence of three years in federal prison and has agreed to repay the clinic $270 for the cost of what she took. The guilty plea to adulteration of a drug held for sale was taken by U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Jill Burkhardt.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s office, Martin admitted she removed the drug from vials with a syringe. She glued the caps back on the vials with the intent to mislead others that the vials had not been touched. The Food and Drug Administration has investigated the case.

Neal Putnam
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