The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
Stafford County doctor, Nibedita Mohanty, charged with involuntary manslaughter, 94 other charges
The Stafford Sheriff’s Office issued the following release this morning:
“The Stafford County Sheriff’s Office is reporting the arrest of Dr. Nibedita Mohanty, age 54 of 441 Marlborough Point Road, Stafford. Mohanty has been charged with 72 Counts of Felony Distribution of a Schedule II Narcotic, 22 Counts of Felony Obtaining Money by False Pretenses (involving insurance fraud), and 1 Count of Involuntary Manslaughter. Dr. Mohanty is currently incarcerated in the
Rappahannock Regional Jail.
BY KEITH EPPS / THE FREE LANCE–STAR
A Stafford doctor was arrested Friday morning on 95 felony charges—including involuntary manslaughter—police said.
Nibedita Mohanty, 54, was indicted Monday by a Stafford County grand jury on 72 counts of illegally distributing drugs, 22 counts of obtaining money by false pretenses and involuntary manslaughter.
The indictments were sealed pending the doctor’s arrest, which occurred on Courthouse Road in Stafford.
It was not immediately clear what led to the manslaughter charge. A Sheriff’s Office release only says that it stems from an overdose death “directly related to Mohanty’s practice of over prescribing pain narcotics.”
Stafford Sheriff’s Capt. Billy Bowler said more information regarding that charge might be released sometime next week.
Other than the manslaughter allegation, the charges against Mohanty aren’t a surprise. Her office on Garrisonville Road and her home on Marlborough Point Road were raided in January. Numerous records, bank statements, computers and cash were seized.
In affidavits for search warrants filed in Stafford Circuit Court, Mohanty was accused of operating a “pill mill” and her North Stafford medical practice was described as a haven for drug abusers and dealers.
During an investigation that began in 2011, police claimed they had identified 46 people who were prescribed drugs by Mohanty that were involved in trafficking prescription drugs. The FBI and the DEA have assisted Stafford authorities in the probe.
The records said Mohanty wrote an average of 50 prescriptions a week, and a doctor who reviewed her prescribing practices said the volume of drugs and other factors indicated something was amiss.
William Winfred Price, Mohanty’s former live-in boyfriend, was the only one of four informants named in the court documents. The others were described as patients who had addictions or legal troubles stemming from drugs they supposedly got from Mohanty.
One informant told police he went to Mohanty at the suggestion of a friend who told him she would prescribed anything for $250.
The affidavits also alleged that Mohanty was involved in tax and insurance fraud.
Mohanty, who practices internal medicine, has been practicing in Stafford for more than 20 years and until recently served as chief of medicine at Stafford Hospital.
She and her attorney, Charles Roberts, released a letter in March in which she adamantly denied any wrongdoing.
“I strongly deny the allegations set out in the news reports and the search warrant affidavit as I have not prescribed medicine to any patient who I knew or had reason to believe was abusing the drugs or selling the medicine to others,” Mohanty wrote in a letter to The Free Lance–Star.
She said she was shocked to have her home and business raided based on information from people she described as drug dealers, drug addicts and convicted felons. She was especially critical of Price, who she accused of intentionally damaging her reputation because she had him arrested following a domestic incident last year.
Price was convicted of several misdemeanors and spent time in jail.
Mohanty wrote at the time that as the result of the investigation, she had permanently given up prescribing pain medication.
“I wish to thank all of my patients and other members of our community for their outpouring of support during this crisis, and I anticipate this investigation ultimately will show that I have not violated any laws,” wrote Mohanty, who had not been charged at the time.
Sheriff’s spokesman Bill Kennedy said the investigation is ongoing and no additional information will be provided at this point.
A date for Mohanty’s initial court appearance in Stafford Circuit Court had not been set as of Friday.
Keith Epps: 540/374-5404