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Date: 09-09-2021

Case Style:

United States of America v. Dr. Janet Sue Arnold

Case Number: 4:18-cr-06044-EFS

Judge: Edward F. Shea

Court: United States District Court for the Eastern District of Washington (Spokane County)

Plaintiff's Attorney: United States Attorney’s Office

Defendant's Attorney:


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Description: Spokane, WA: Drug distribution criminal defense lawyer represented Defendant, Dr. Janet Sue Arnold, age 63, who was charged with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute opioid pain medications (specifically, fentanyl, oxycodone, methadone, hydromorphone, methylphenidate, and amphetamine mixture) and other controlled substances (carisoprodol and alprazolam), without a legitimate medical purpose and outside the usual course of professional practice.

Four other defendants, Danielle Corine Mata, age 44, of Richland, Washington, David Barnes Nay, age 43, of Kennewick, Washington, Lisa Marie Cooper, age 55, of Prosser, Washington, and Jennifer Cheri Prichard, age 46, of Prosser, Washington, previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute opioid pain medications and other controlled substances, and are scheduled to be sentenced on October 19, 2021, November 2, 2021, and November 9, 2021, in Richland, Washington.

According to court documents and information disclosed during court proceedings, Dr. Arnold owned and operated Desert Wind Family Practice, at 431 Wellsian Way in Richland, Washington. Beginning in approximately March 2016, and continuing until May 3, 2017, Dr. Arnold pre-signed hundreds of blank prescription forms and provided them to Mata, Prichard, and Cooper, who were drug addicts. These individuals then provided the illegal prescriptions to individuals seeking opioids and other controlled substances or used the prescriptions to get their drugs of choice. Dr. Arnold allowed Mata, who also acted as Desert Wind Family Practice’s office manager, to fill in all the required prescription information (patient name, drug type, dosage, and quantity) on the pre-signed blank prescriptions. Dr. Arnold’s practice of pre-signing blank prescription forms enabled the conspirators, including Nay, a drug dealer and addict, to distribute significant quantities of opioid medications and other controlled substances.

Acting United States Attorney Joseph H. Harrington said, “Dr. Arnold abandoned her role as a medical doctor by essentially turning over her prescription pad to her office manager and others. Today’s guilty plea should serve as a warning to all medical professionals that if you abuse your medical license by prescribing opioids and other drugs without a legitimate medical purpose and outside the usual course of professional practice, you will be held accountable. I commend the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of the Inspector General, agents who investigated this case.”

This investigation was conducted by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Office of the Inspector General. This case is being prosecuted by George J.C. Jacobs, III and Dominique J. Park, Assistant United States Attorneys for the Eastern District of Washington.

Outcome: 09/02/2021 577 Minute Entry for proceedings held before Senior Judge Edward F. Shea: Change of Plea Hearing as to Janet Arnold (1) held on 9/2/2021. (Reported/Recorded by: Marilynn McMartin) (SG, Case Administrator) (Entered: 09/02/2021)
09/02/2021 578 PLEA AGREEMENT as to Janet Arnold (1). (SG, Case Administrator) (Entered: 09/02/2021)
09/02/2021 579 ORDER ACCEPTING GUILTY PLEA; Janet Arnold (1) enters guilty plea on Count One of the Superseding Indictment. Signed by Senior Judge Edward F. Shea. (SG, Case Administrator) (Entered: 09/02/2021)
09/02/2021 580 ORDER REGARDING SCHEDULE FOR SENTENCING as to Janet Arnold (1). Sentencing set for 12/7/2021 at 01:15 PM in Richland Courtroom 326. Signed by Senior Judge Edward F. Shea. (SG, Case Administrator) (Entered: 09/02/2021)

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