News Release
July 29, 2009
Contact: Joanna DeSanto
Number: 312-886-2597

Minnesota Registered Nurse Sentenced for Obtaining Controlled Substance Illegally

JUL 29 -- (Minneapolis) A 40-year-old Coon Rapids woman was sentenced yesterday in federal court for obtaining a controlled substance for her own use by fraud while employed as a registered nurse at a home health care agency.

On July 27 in Minneapolis, United States District Court Judge James Rosenbaum sentenced Julie Crystal Fronk to one year in prison and one year of supervised release. Fronk was charged on March 4 and pleaded guilty on March 23.

According to Fronk’s plea agreement, she admitted that from May 2008 through July 2008, she knowingly and intentionally obtained Vicodin by misrepresentation, fraud and deception after the pills had been prescribed to others. Fronk also admitted she failed to dispose of the Vicodin properly. Instead, she acquired the pills for her own use and benefit.

"Addiction to pain medication is a growing concern in drug law enforcement," stated Gary G. Olenkiewicz, DEA's Special Agent in Charge of the Chicago Field Division which covers the state of Minnesota. "The public depends on the integrity of the medical community when they receive prescribed medications. It is unfortunate that Ms. Fonk abused her position of trust as a medical professional by stealing pain medication prescribed for patients and used it for her own personal use."

This case was the result of an investigation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration - Office of Criminal Investigations, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Minneapolis Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Erika R. Mozangue.