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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Alabama

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Fairhope Doctor Charged With Illegal Drug Distribution

United States Attorney Kenyen R. Brown of the Southern District of Alabama announces that Richard Snellgrove, M.D. of Fairhope, Alabama has been indicted and arraigned on charges that he prescribed various Controlled Substances outside the usual course of professional practice and not for a legitimate medical purpose.

The six-count Indictment alleges that on five different occasions, Dr. Snellgrove prescribed Controlled Substances in the names of different individuals knowing and intending that the Controlled Substances go to an individual identified in the Indictment as “M.R.”  These five prescriptions were for methadone, hydrocodone, lorazepam, and fentanyl.  All five of these prescriptions were allegedly written outside the usual course of professional practice and not for a legitimate medical purpose.  Count Six alleges that on August 18, 2016, Dr. Snellgrove prescribed 75mcg/hr fentanyl patches directly to M.R. outside the usual course of professional practice and not for a legitimate medical purpose.

“It is disheartening when trusted professionals are engaged in the diversion of controlled substances,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Stephen G. Azzam.  “Doctors have an obligation to ensure that prescription medications are getting into the hands of legitimate patients.  This investigation is the result of DEA’s continued commitment to hold accountable those who participate in illegally dispensing Controlled Substances in our communities,” stated Azzam. 

“The West Bend Police Department and the City of West Bend want to thank the DEA agents in Alabama, and the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Southern District of Alabama for their outstanding work and level of cooperation with the City of West Bend Police Department in clearing this case,” said Chief Kenneth Meuler, City of West Bend Police Department.  “We have all experienced way too many deaths in our communities due to prescription drug abuse. Investigations and indictments like today’s are steps that will save lives in the future,” stated Meuler.

This matter was investigated by DEA-Mobile and the West Bend, Wisconsin Police Department.  This case will be prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Alabama.

As in all criminal cases, an Indictment is only an allegation made by a grand jury.   Dr. Richard Snellgrove is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Updated November 23, 2016