Monday, June 18, 2018
Public safety

Spring Hill pain clinic closes after inspection

SPRING HILL — One pain management clinic has closed and two others are on notice after recent inspections by the Hernando County Sheriff's Office.

The sheriff's vice and narcotics unit inspected all 11 of the county's registered clinics between Jan. 29 and Feb. 12, the Sheriff's Office said Friday. Eight of them passed.

One of the three that failed, Cosmopolitan Clinic in Spring Hill, was operating without a listed doctor. The clinic, at 13111 Spring Hill Drive, also failed to place a county license number on prescriptions, investigators said.

The report will be sent to Hernando County code enforcement for review. The clinic will not be able to reopen until the operators obtain a doctor and apply for a new license.

The clinic's former doctor, Dennis Varel, died Jan. 10 of an apparent drug overdose, the Citrus County Sheriff's Office said last week.

On Feb. 7, Citrus officials shut down a Crystal River clinic that Varel and another doctor had opened last year. Varel and Dr. Daniel McIntire never registered Central Clinic with the state, investigators said.

The clinic, which deputies had been investigating for about a year, had dispensed 1.5 million narcotic pills since it opened, Citrus authorities said, with an estimated street value of more than $12 million.

McIntire was arrested and charged with two counts of trafficking in the painkiller oxycodone.

Dr. Ahmed's General Practice Pain and Injury Clinic in Spring Hill violated three sections of the county's ordinance, according to the Hernando Sheriff's Office. The clinic, at 12080 Cortez Blvd., accepted only cash for all services rendered, failed to properly display its permit and did not place a county license number on prescriptions issued at the office, authorities said.

Dr. Nasim Ahmed was given a notice to appear in court for the first two misdemeanor violations. The third violation will be reviewed, along with the rest of the charges, by code enforcement officials, who could revoke the clinic's license.

Ahmed was previously warned for failing to place a license number on prescriptions, the Sheriff's Office said.

Florida Medical Pain Management, at 5270 Applegate Drive in Spring Hill, also failed its inspection for not placing a county license number on prescriptions, authorities said. The clinic, whose listed doctor is Jose Rivera, was issued a warning, and code enforcement officials will review the report.

Reach Tony Marrero at [email protected] or (352) 848-1431. Follow him on Twitter @TMarreroTimes.

Comments
Tampa police seek driver who struck pedestrian and fled scene

Tampa police seek driver who struck pedestrian and fled scene

TAMPA — Police are seeking the public’s help in locating the driver who fatally struck a pedestrian before fleeing the scene on Sunday night.Police say the driver struck an unidentified woman near the intersection of N Nebraska Avenue and E Linebaugh...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Man caught in rip current, drowns off Lido Beach

Man caught in rip current, drowns off Lido Beach

A man who was swimming off Lido Beach got caught in a rip current and drowned Sunday night.According to the Sarasota Police Department, the unidentified man was swimming with a woman near Big Pass, a boater channel, around 10 p.m. before becoming cau...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Child, 1, killed in single-car crash in Ruskin

Child, 1, killed in single-car crash in Ruskin

RUSKIN — A 1-year-old child was killed Sunday night and four family members were hospitalized when their vehicle overturned into a ditch.Deputies, responding to the scene after receiving several 911 calls around 6:30 p.m., located the overturned vehi...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Tampa man drowns in waters near Gandy Bridge

Tampa man drowns in waters near Gandy Bridge

A Tampa man drowned Sunday night in the waters on the Pinellas side of the Gandy Bridge.According to Pinellas County deputies, 28-year-old Cruz Sales-Lopez was swimming with girlfriend Erika Fuentes Ambrosio, 33, near the northwest side of the Gandy ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
St. Petersburg teen, 16, and unborn child killed in Pasco crash

St. Petersburg teen, 16, and unborn child killed in Pasco crash

A St. Petersburg teen, 16, and her unborn child were killed Sunday night in a crash in Pasco County, according to a release from the Florida Highway Patrol. Emily Pearson was killed on Little Road at 9:11 p.m. She was a passenger in a 1997 Ford Rang...
Updated: 6 hours ago
St. Petersburg teen, 16, and unborn child killed in Pasco crash

St. Petersburg teen, 16, and unborn child killed in Pasco crash

A St. Petersburg teen, 16, and her unborn child were killed Sunday night in a crash in Pasco County, according to a release from the Florida Highway Patrol. Emily Pearson was killed on Little Road at 9:11 p.m. She was a passenger in a 1997 Ford Range...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Motorcyclist and pedestrian die in Pasco crash

Motorcyclist and pedestrian die in Pasco crash

NEW PORT RICHEY — A motorcyclist and pedestrian both died in a crash Saturday night near Palmetto Road and U.S. 19, police reported.About 10:30 p.m., a St. Petersburg man, 41, was riding a 2012 Honda motorcycle north on the highway, according to the ...
Published: 06/17/18
1 dead, 20 injured in New Jersey arts festival shooting

1 dead, 20 injured in New Jersey arts festival shooting

TRENTON, N.J — Shooting broke out at an all-night art festival in Trenton, New Jersey, early Sunday, sending people stampeding from the scene and leaving one suspect dead and 20 people injured, a local prosecutor said. Many of the 20 injured were tre...
Published: 06/17/18
Mazzaro’s Italian Market closed after Friday night warehouse fire

Mazzaro’s Italian Market closed after Friday night warehouse fire

ST. PETERSBURG — Mazzaro’s Italian Market will be closed throughout the weekend after a warehouse fire broke out Friday.A St. Petersburg Police officer noticed smoke coming from the market at 22nd Ave. N around midnight Friday, said St. Petersburg F...
Published: 06/16/18
A fentanyl death. A crackdown on opioid dealers. Will it help?

A fentanyl death. A crackdown on opioid dealers. Will it help?

TAMPA — Loueita Hargens had known for years how her son Bradley Dykes would die. She had seen him cycle through drugs of choice, had lost track of the number of times he’d wound up in the hospital or prison.A recovering alcoholic herself, she cut him...
Published: 06/16/18