ABINGDON, VIRGINIA – A Norton, Virginia physician who specialized in urology was sentenced this morning in the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia in Abingdon on a federal drug distribution charge, United States Attorney Rick A. Mountcastle and Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring announced.
Felix Eugene Shepard, Jr., 57, was sentenced today to six months in federal prison. Shepard Jr. previously pleaded guilty to one count of distributing oxycodone, a Schedule II controlled substance.
According to evidence presented to the court by Special Assistant United States Attorney and Assistant Attorney General Suzanne Kerney-Quillen, Shepard admitted to writing 47 prescriptions for oxycodone to a person he was involved with in a sexual relationship. Over the course of two years, Shepard issued prescriptions for over 2,000 dose units of oxycodone to the person and later admitted to investigators that he had concerns the person was either addicted to or diverting the pills.
Shepard admitted to the Virginia Board of Medicine that the narcotic prescriptions were written to the person outside of a bona fide doctor-patient relationship and with whom he had a sexual relationship. Shepard continuously prescribed narcotic medications to the person without performing physical examinations, evaluations, or diagnostic testing, for conditions that were outside the scope of his urological practice. In statements Shepard made to the Virginia Board of Medicine, he expressed concern regarding the amount of oxycodone he had prescribed the person and said the amounts were indicative of addiction. However, Shepard took no action to address the person’s possible addiction and/or diversion of the oxycodone he prescribed.
The investigation of the case was conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration-Tactical Diversion Squad. Special Assistant United States Attorney Suzanne Kerney-Quillen, a Virginia Assistant Attorney General assigned to the Attorney General’s Major Crimes and Emerging Threats Section, prosecuted the case for the United States.