February 12, 2014 the Greenhorn Valley Veterinary Clinic reported to Pueblo County Deputy Sheriff James Boley the theft and Burglary of liquid Morphine from a safe located in the clinic. The Morphine is commonly used in surgery on animals. The Clinic, which had a good system in place to secure and control the Morphine, reported no damage to the building or the secured location of the controlled substance. The employees were questioned and cleared as suspects. With no additional leads the case went cold.
On August 18, 2014, PCSO Deputy Joshua Ragen received a call from Jeff’s Valley Health Mart, a Pharmacy located in Colorado City, Colorado, of a possible Fraud involving a prescription. Deputy Ragen learned 37-year-old John William Bell of Colorado City had filled a prescription at the pharmacy for Norco, which is a combination of Acetaminophen and Hydrocodone. The pharmacy upon a second check of the prescription found it suspicious and called the doctor who wrote the prescription and discovered it had been altered and the Norco was never prescribed to Bell.
Pueblo County Sheriff Narcotics Detectives and Detective Anthony Colletti soon discovered Bell had an active warrant for his arrest for unlawfully obtaining a controlled substance by fraud or deceit on another case investigated by the Pueblo Police.
Detective Colletti arrested Bell on the warrant and questioned Bell who confessed to using veterinary clinic employee’s keys (whom Bell was associated with) to access the veterinary clinic and steal the Morphine in February without the employee’s knowledge.
Detective Colletti obtained additional arrest warrants for Bell’s arrest on the following charges;
· Unlawfully Obtained a Controlled Substance by Fraud or Deceit a class 6 felony. 10,000 bond
· 2nd Degree Burglary of a Schedule I Controlled Substance a class 3 felony, 75,000 bond.
Both the clinic and pharmacy have good systems in place to catch or prevent these crimes from happening and worked diligently with The Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office to reach a successful resolution in these cases.