Local News

Fayetteville man wanted for posing as doctor surrenders

Posted March 6, 2014
Updated March 10, 2014

— A Fayetteville man accused of operating a fraudulent medical clinic and writing prescriptions using stolen credentials surrendered to authorities Thursday.

Cumberland County sheriff’s investigators said Wright Gillies, 60, was charged with felony identity theft and misdemeanor practicing medicine without a license in connection with the RF Medical Clinic, at 705 Cumberland St.

Gillies was released from the Cumberland County Detention Center on a $10,000 unsecured bond. His first court appearance is scheduled for Friday.

Investigators say Gillies did not have a valid medical license when he was giving flu shots and prescriptions to children and adults at the clinic, which accepted cash but not insurance.

“It’s very scary,” said Debbie Tanna, a spokeswoman with the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office.

Investigators on Wednesday shut down the medical clinic, which operated inside the Right Foundation building. Right Foundation Mental Health, which operates in the same building, is open.

WRAL News found a record with a physician's assistant named Wright Gillies who surrendered his license in New York back in 2009.

The document shows the physician assistant falsely filled out his license renewal, saying he had not been charged with a crime. In fact, he pleaded guilty to child endangerment.

Records show Gillies has been in North Carolina since at least 2011. He was listed as an adjunct faculty member at Miller-Motte College. A school spokeswoman told WRAL News that Gillies doesn't teach there now.

Authorities began their investigation in November after a deputy was tipped to bogus prescriptions coming from the clinic. Tanna said it took several months to build a case.

“We had to make sure that this is what he had done, and there were actually people that he was treating – writing prescriptions for and giving injections to – before we could have any type of information to pursue charges,” she said.

The State Bureau of Investigation and Fayetteville police are working with the sheriff’s office on the investigation. They have not said which doctor’s identification or credentials were used to write the fraudulent prescriptions.

Gillies apparently tried to turn himself in Wednesday night and was told to go home because the charges were not finalized.

Tanna said the investigation is ongoing and more charges are pending.


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  • Tammy Rogers Mar 7, 2014
    user avatar

    Well, at least he did have some medical training. It's not like Joe Blow, former ditch digger was posing as a physician. He was a licensed physician's assistant until 2009 in NY according to the article. Now, let's see a show of hands of people who visit the "doctor" and actually see a PA and are written prescriptions by said PA? I know I have more times than I can count. Most urgent care centers are staffed by physician assistants these days. That said, he was wrong to do what he did, but I don't think anyone's life was truly threatened.

  • LovemyPirates Mar 7, 2014

    ligonmaterial - If he is practicing medicine without a proper license, he is breaking the law. Would you have this same attitude about other law breakers say someone without proper documentation? Just curious.

  • Donald Holder Mar 7, 2014
    user avatar

    View quoted thread

    He wasn't admitting his guilt, he was turning himself in.

  • ligonmaterial23 Mar 7, 2014

    IF , key word IF he was a DR before I dont see anything that horrible here , it does not SEEM he was running a pill mill , seems he was just trying to make a living and helping people . How did we ever get better in the old days w/o a piece of paper ?

  • grandmagail Mar 7, 2014

    You have to have a warrant for someone who has broken the law to turn themselves in? Doesn't make sense to me. If he says he's guilty why wait for a piece of paper?

  • Donald Holder Mar 6, 2014
    user avatar

    View quoted thread

    It takes time to build a case and get a warrant. A judge isn't going to issue an arrest warrant just because they were tipped to bogus prescriptions coming from the clinic. They even had to have enough evidence to warrant a search warrant to seach the office and files. I'm guessing they had to get documentatin from the pharmacy and the doctor whos identity he stole before they could get the search warant. When he turned himself in today, they had a warrant, it was last night they didn't have one.

  • DontVote4LiarsCheatsOrThieves Mar 6, 2014

    It's unconscionable to me that the authorities began this investigation in November, let this guy continue dispensing RXs and giving shots illegally until earlier this week, some of them to children, then still don't have a warrant for his arrest ready when he turns himself in to them today.

    What were they waiting for? Someone to die at his hands???