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Ark. FF/medic fired, arrested after stealing morphine

Centerton Firefighter/Paramedic Michael Brown stated he administered the drug to a patient after the fire chief noticed a 10 mg vial was missing


Centerton Fire Department ambulances.

Centerton Fire Department/Facebook

By Kate Linderman
The Charlotte Observer

CENTERTON, Ark. — A firefighter initially told police he gave a patient 2 mg of morphine while on a call, but he later said he used the drug himself, according to Arkansas police.

An investigation into the firefighter began when the Centerton Fire Chief noticed a 10 mg vial was missing from the narcotics safe, Centerton police said.

[RELATED: Why EMS managers must plan for narcotic thefts]

Video footage showed firefighter and paramedic Michael Brown in the room with the narcotics safe and his name was signed on a log showing he went into the safe, according to court documents filed Feb. 21.

Two other names were also listed on the log, but the individuals told police they were in different locations at the time, according to an affidavit. Video footage also did not show the two others in the room with the safe.

Brown had gone home sick on Feb. 16, the day the fire chief called police, authorities said in an affidavit of probable cause.

When a police detective and Washington County Sheriff’s deputy met Brown at his home, they asked why police might want to speak with him. Brown replied, “Maybe about some missing narcs from the ambulance,” according to court documents.

Brown told authorities he administered 2 mg of morphine to an ambulance patient who signed a refusal of care without documenting it, according to court records. He then disputed his own statement after police said they would check with the patient, officials said.

Brown told police he went to the emergency room for abdominal issues, according to court records. He said he had taken 2 mg of the morphine, according to an affidavit from police.

He was arrested and charged with forgery and controlled substances-fraudulent practices.

Centerton Fire Department Chief Matt Thompson told McClatchy News Brown was fired Feb. 16 , the day he was arrested.

Attorney information for Brown was not listed.

Centerton is about 220 miles northwest of Little Rock .

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