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Pa. paramedic sentenced for stealing painkillers from work

The paramedic stole morphine and fentanyl from syringes and replaced the missing drugs with saline

By EMS1 Staff

NORRISTOWN, Pa. — A Montgomery County paramedic was sentenced Tuesday after pleading guilty to obtaining pain medications by fraud from her ambulance company.

Tara Marzucco, 34, was sentenced to 24 months in a county intermediate punishment program, the first 12 months which must be served under house arrest, the Montgomery News reported. Marzucco will wear an ankle bracelet and will only be permitted to leave her home for court-approved purposes. The remaining 12 months of her sentence will be spent under intensive probation.

“Addicts come up with devious ways to get drugs. They aren’t thinking straight,” Judge Gary S. Silow stated during Marzucco’s sentencing. “You’re wound differently when you’re an addict.”

Marzucco extracted morphine and liquid fentanyl from her agency’s syringes and then replaced the missing narcotics with saline. Prosecutors allege she altered medication logs to hide the discrepancies.

“The fact of the matter is clearly you put a lot of people at risk with your conduct. But that lack of insight was the result of your addiction,” Silow said. “It doesn’t excuse anything, but it does explain certain things.”

The judge also ordered Marzucco to complete five years of probation and 100 hours of community service. Her sentence means that she will be under court supervision for a total of seven years.

As a mother of two, Marzucco will be placed under addict supervision by probation officers.

“The reason I’m doing this is you need not destroy your children’s lives any further,” Silow said. “But if you violate, I’ll send you away, you’re gone.”

The investigation began in April 2015 after agency officials discovered that tamper seals for over a dozen morphine and fentanyl syringes were broken. Marzucco told officials she used the drugs for her own use, administering them through her nose and body once or twice a week.