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State Attorney’s Office declines to prosecute in ‘doctor shopping’ case

By Staff | Jun 30, 2011

The state will not prosecute a Cape Coral man accused of receiving at least $41,000 in prescription medications through doctor shopping.
Joel E. Stoddard Jr., 36, of 1913 N.E. First Place, was charged in September with 18 counts of fraud conceal information to obtain prescription controlled substance. The State Attorney’s Office amended the charges to withholding information from a practioner and officially filed 18 counts.
Last week, the state decided to nolle prosequi — not prosecute — because of “insufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt,” according to court documents.
Assistant State Attorney Connie Serrano was assigned to prosecute the case.
Defense attorney Peter Ringsmuth represented Stoddard.
Stoddard had been accused of visiting seven medical offices, from Fort Myers to Lehigh Acres to Pompano Beach, located on the southeast coast of Florida, and receiving prescriptions but not disclosing that he had received similar medications from other doctors within the same 30-day period.
Investigators had alleged Stoddard had received Valium, Methadone, Oxycodone, Roxicodone, Diazepam and MS Contin. The Lee County Sheriff’s Office, which investigated the case, reported that the total estimated street value of the medications allegedly received by Stoddard was about $41,070.