Psychiatrists, office staff charged in Kinston prescription drug ring
Posted March 17, 2015
Kinston, N.C. — An illegal prescription drug ring has landed two Kinston psychiatrists and three others in jail, the State Bureau of Investigation announced Tuesday.
Drs. JoAnna Wolicki-Shannon, 50, and Walter Shannon, 64, were arrested at their Kinston practice on Tuesday for fraudulently obtaining over 5,000 pills and capsules since 2012, investigators said. Wolicki-Shannon faces six counts of obtaining controlled substances by fraud, Shannon faces 12 counts of the same charge.
Both are accused of writing bogus prescriptions for Phentermine, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Adderall, Vyvanse and Ritalin, the SBI said. The Shannons then used their employees to submit and pick up the prescriptions, authorities said.
Lisa Renay Lankford, 53, of Kinston, is charged with 18 counts of obtaining controlled substances by fraud. Lankford, the Shannon’s former office manager, remained in the Lenoir County jail Tuesday under a $279,000 bond.
Candice Raegan Hill, 35, of Snow Hill, is charged with 10 counts of obtaining controlled substances by fraud and 10 counts of trafficking opium. Hill, another former office manager, was held in the Lenoir County jail Tuesday under a $650,000 bond.
Hill’s boyfriend, James Howington, 31, of Kinston, faces the same charges as his girlfriend. He remained in jail Tuesday under a $659,000 bond.