Nurse contracted by TMH in Craig arrested for theft

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Richard Dickerson

An independent contractor working at The Memorial Hospital in Craig has posted bond following his arrest for allegedly stealing prescription drugs from the hospital.

A Craig Police Department investigation into Richard Timothy Dickerson, 37, of Hutchinson, Kan., is ongoing. Additional charges could be filed pending the outcome of the probe, Sgt. John Forgay said.

“We’ve got some other things we need to look at real seriously,” Forgay said. “Part of that is what we had at the time was simply a misdemeanor crime. We’re following up with an investigation and there’s a good chance we will be charging further crimes.

“Those things I can’t get into at this time because of the investigation.”

That message was conveyed Thursday afternoon during a joint news conference at TMH with police and hospital officials. More than 20 people attended the conference, including hospital employees.

Police arrested Dickerson, a certified registered nurse and anesthetist, Wednesday morning on suspicion of second-degree misdemeanor theft of less than $500. He was contracted by TMH less than 20 days ago.

Jennifer Riley, TMH chief of organizational excellence, said police officers were called to the hospital after staffers reported Dickerson’s behavior was unusual.

The hospital has protocols in place requiring staffers report such behavior to administration, she said.

“Administration conducted an investigation beginning this week and looked at a number of factors that led to the discovery that medication was missing,” Riley said.

Police officers allege Dickerson was stealing Propofol, a short-acting anesthetic.

Propofol is not a narcotic, nor is it a controlled substance in Colorado, Riley said. It is provided to patients by prescription.

Authorities believe Dickerson was stealing Propofol for personal use.

“There is no indication of negative effects on patients, but the hospital is investigating into that thoroughly to ensure there was no harm done,” Riley said. “That is our top priority.”

Because the investigation is ongoing, Forgay would not comment on whether Dickerson has a prior criminal history.

Riley said the hospital has an extensive credentialing process, which includes obtaining peer reviews, certifications, and conducting background checks.

“We completed the credentialing process in mid-January, rechecked licenses today, and there are no blemishes on his record,” she said. “There was nothing in his background to indicate he could not be a provider.

“We have a well established credentialing process and it was followed to the letter.”

TMH officials said Thursday the hospital has other anesthesia providers and services would not be disrupted.

“While we are disappointed in this individual’s actions, we are pleased that our internal protocols alerted us to the situation and allowed us to address it quickly without disruption to our patients or employees,” CEO George Rohrich said in a news release. “This is an isolated incident that is not reflective of the commitment and dedication our employees demonstrate every day.

“We hope our intervention will lead to Mr. Dickerson’s recovery.”

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Comments

rpadonjr 2 years, 1 month ago

CDP always portraying a man guilty before a fair trial. I bet if this took place at the Yampa Valley Medical Center in Steamboat the article would never have been written. Having spent nearly a year away from Craig, I realized when I can back last weekend how depressing and horrible Craig has become. I firmly believe that the newspaper and the horrible articles that they write play a huge negative influence on everyone in the community.

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Sam Relaford 2 years, 1 month ago

YUP once again the paper is trying to make someone look guilty without a trial!! He was arrested but we dont know why...??!! Why not get the whole story before you put it to print?!

I really hope this guy didnt steal from any patients but if he did...SHAME ON YOU!

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cag81625 2 years, 1 month ago

"Arrested on suspicion of"... what part of this portrays the man guilty? What part of it is not factual? I see stuff like this all the time in newspapers all over the place. As I read it, the ultimate goal of the article was to announce the news conference. Since when are news conferences not newsworthy?

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Insider1313 2 years, 1 month ago

I agree with you all. Remember Frank Schmedeke, not guilty. The chief of police gets caught with is gun missing and a inmate returns it and it gets buried. This can't be the norm. There has to be something we can do about this. I am getting ready to go into a paranoid rant so I will quit with, I hope this guy is innocent and files a lawsuit.

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Patrick Germond 2 years, 1 month ago

I think the paper acted in a normal way. However, the point about having a little more proof does seem reasonable. His reputation could be greatly impacted for no reason if it turns out he's innocent. But still, the paper would be accused of a cover up if they just sat on it.

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ronswanson 2 years, 1 month ago

Respectfully, I think you are all missing the bigger point. Why is the hospital hiring someone like this? Their "everyone is replaceable" policy is clealy short sighted and detrimental to the community. The bottom line is clearly more important to the hospital administration than keeping qualified people.

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native_craig_guy 2 years, 1 month ago

The man is accused of stealing... The cops cant say that he was arrested for theft without adding "allegedly" or "on suspicion of of"... that's because he hasn't been found guilty by a court of law. The hospital did their internal ivnestigation and called the cops, if the hospital thought that this man was stealing they did the right thing. I think it is pathetic how whenever someone is charged with a crime in this county, the presumption is always that the cops are out to get people.... They had probable cause for an arrest warrant so there is sufficient evidence in place to justify the accusations... enough said... if this guy wanted to relax though, I dont see why he didnt just get a prescription for medical marijuana like the rest of the "sick and in pain" people that we have in the valley. People need to get off the chief of police soap box in this town, he messed up and was reprimanded... so what. Everyone has screwed up at their job at one point or another, does that mean that you should get fired for it? No.... Maybe if more people in this town focused on making it better and not just sitting around complaining about everything and how the world is out to get them, Craig would be a better place.

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obamablows 2 years, 1 month ago

WOW native craig guy so naive obviously never dealt with the craig police or the school district for that matter most of them were dorks growing up and now they have uniforms and they are going to let you know who is in charge.and instead of profiling teenage kids and locking them up,and our tax dollars being wasted on ACET having kids snitch on other kids to lower their charges for possesion go after the real dealers not the petty ones selling a few pills here and there they know who they are and most of the cops and sheriff's deputy's live in glass houses anyway!!!!!! if you know what I mean

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hmm 2 years, 1 month ago

...I believe someone who is "innocent" wouldn't be smiling in a mug shot...just sayin'

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pbjfan81625 2 years, 1 month ago

Hey obamablows....dude, take a breath already! Judging by your post, it does not look as if you dealt with ANY school district past the fourth grade.

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