Muncie nurse charged with prescription fraud

Melinda Duncan (Photo: Delaware County Jail)
Muncie Nurse Accused of Prescription Fraud
Nurse arrested prescription fraud
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MUNCIE, Ind. (WTHR) - A nurse in Muncie is facing a slew of charges after police say she got dozens of bottles of painkillers by using fake prescriptions for a full year.

Police arrested Melinda Duncan, 35, late last week on felony prescription fraud charges in Muncie. She's still being held without bond at the Delaware County Jail because investigators say she committed the same crime in Madison County.

Detectives say she started the fraud at a place she should have been trusted - at her job as a nurse at Urology Associates. They say she has since been fired.

Investigators say Duncan would give blank prescription forms to the nurse practitioner to sign, claiming they were for lab orders.

They weren't.

Investigators say Duncan filled out those bogus prescriptions for painkillers in her name, in her husband's name, and in her daughters' names and took them to various pharmacies and got the drugs. Prosecutors say she had at least 28 fake prescriptions filled in Muncie over a year, plus more than 40 prescriptions filled in Anderson and Pendleton over that same time.

Duncan told police she was giving the pills to a Muncie drug dealer as a payoff so he wouldn't hurt her. But they say she also admitted to self-medicating, taking pills herself, saying she "would fail a drug test."

Police say a pharmacist in Muncie, suspicious about Duncan's repeated prescriptions, was key to this case. She called Urology Associates, questioning the multiple prescriptions. That's when they realized what was going on and called police.

Investigators say this whole crime was a major breach of trust.

"It's one of those jobs where you're supposed to be giving back to people, like helping the community, but then once you do stuff like this it can be very selfish and all of a sudden you're using your position for personal gain and obviously we frown on that as police officers but, I mean, when you're supposed to be providing health and care for other people and you use it for yourself, not good," said Muncie Police Detective Ryan McCorkle.

Court papers show Duncan celebrated a birthday on Sunday, in jail, where she remains without bond. Now, she'll be headed to court for multiple charges in two counties.