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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Montana

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Krystel A. Buckland Pleads Guilty In U.S. Federal Court

The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings, on July 23, 2013, before U.S. District Judge Donald W. Molloy, KRYSTEL A. BUCKLAND, a 32-year-old resident of Billings, pled guilty to acquiring a controlled substance by subterfuge. Sentencing has been set for October 23, 2013. She is currently released on special conditions.

In an Offer of Proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Brendan P. McCarthy, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:

On August 19, 2012, a task force officer with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) received a phone call from the pharmacy district manager for the K-Mart in Billings. The manager indicated that there were numerous prescription pills missing from the pharmacy department. The prescription pills first started to appear missing in February of 2012.

K-Mart then installed video cameras in the pharmacy department. On August 29, 2012, BUCKLAND, a pharmacist at the store, was seen on the video camera entering into the pharmacy after pharmacy hours and stealing numerous prescription pills. The video showed BUCKLAND taking the pills and then stuffing them into her clothing. BUCKLAND had been hired in February of 2012.

On August 31, 2012, BUCKLAND was interviewed by a DEA task force officer. She admitted that she did steal all of the prescription pills, and that she started stealing pills when she first began working at K-Mart. According to BUCKLAND, she used all of the pills herself. She indicated that she would use approximately 100 pills per day. After the interview, BUCKLAND gave consent to search her car and recovered numerous pill bottles and a small amount of pills in the vehicle.

The records from K-Mart indicate that approximately 18,000 hydrocodone and oxycodone pills were taken from the pharmacy from February of 2012 through August of 2012.

BUCKLAND faces possible penalties of 4 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and 3 years supervised release.

The investigation was conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Updated January 14, 2015