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Worthington woman allegedly alters prescription

WORTHINGTON -- A woman whose husband was caught under the wheels of a train in November was charged Friday with altering a prescription to receive a higher dosage of Lortab.

Pamela Elizabeth Carey, also known as Pamela Carey-Chuol, 42, of Worthington, was charged with aggravated forgery-making or altering, aggravated forgery-uttering or possessing, and fifth-degree controlled substance procurement by fraud, all felonies.

According to the criminal complaint, the Worthington Police Department was contacted shortly after 5 p.m. Wednesday by Sterling Drug. The pharmacist told an officer she had been presented with a prescription for Lortab, a combination of hydrocodone and acetaminophen, written for Carey.

The prescription appeared to have been altered to provide for 10 milligram doses instead of 5 milligrams, the pharmacist reported. She had called the issuing doctor and his nurse. The doctor said he had prescribed 5 milligrams and had not changed or altered the amount. The nurse also denied changing the dosage amount. The doctor reportedly instructed the pharmacist to refrain from filling the prescription and contact authorities.

The officer checked the prescription in question and noted the number 5 appeared to have been scribbled over and changed to a 10. He then spoke to Carey, who allegedly denied altering the prescription.

Carey was arrested and transported to the Prairie Justice Center, where she waived her rights and agreed to speak to the officer on the record. She told him she didn't do anything to the document. She said her middle name was misspelled on the prescription, which she brought to the attention of the nurse. Both her name and the dosage were then changed, she claimed.

Carey insisted she did not change the prescription and was not even in possession of a pen.

Bond was set Friday morning for $500.

Carey is the wife of Changkuoth Chuol, who allegedly attempted to crawl under a United Pacific tanker car in early November instead of waiting for the tracks to clear at the 12th Street/First Avenue intersection. Chuol, who was reportedly under the influence of alcohol and marijuana at the time of the incident, had to have both his right arm and right leg below the knee amputated. He told authorities he was preparing to cross the tracks at the intersection when a train came from his left and hit him.

A witness to the incident said he saw Chuol crawl under the tanker while it was stopped and appear to snag his clothing on the underside of the car when it began to move. Shortly after the incident, Chuol's blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was tested by medical staff, with a result of .278.