SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) — A former schools superintendent and his attorney have a warning for people who might consider buying prescription drugs over the Internet.
Wendell Scott Smith was fined $100,000 and sentenced to a year on probation Thursday after pleading guilty to misdemeanor drug charges in U.S. District Court in Shreveport.
The charges stem from the 61-year-old Bossier City man buying prescription drugs online.
The companies that sell them “... make themselves look like they are legitimate,” Scott’s attorney, former Caddo District Attorney Paul Carmouche, told KSLA News 12. “They even send an alleged doctor’s prescription when they have them delivered.”
The kicker, Carmouche added, is that these internet pharmacies “... still are soliciting him to purchase these drugs.”
Smith said he hardly missed work during his 38-year career and, as a result, ended up with more than 525 days of annual vacation and sick leave combined.
"I just had this pride, I guess, about me. I just said ‘I want to come to work, I want to come to work’ 14-16 hours every day. It kind of helped me move up to where I was with the Bossier Parish school system because of my work ethic.
“But it came at a price, at a cost.”
In retrospect, Smith said, he should have handled things better.
And he should have been aware of the dangers of the internet pharmacies, he added.
"They tell you that pending a doctor’s order that you are going to receive these medications. And they send this prescription through the mail signed by a doctor, a script.
It seems like it is legitimate, Smith said, but it’s not.
“So people need to be very concerned.”
Customers think they are getting something that is legitimate, Smith continued, but it comes from outside the country.
And if it comes from outside the country, he added, that is a federal offense.
“Lesson learned for me and, hopefully, that’ll be a lesson that, maybe my last lesson that I am giving to everybody is learn from my mistake and please don’t repeat it.”
His advice: “If you have trouble, use your time, go to a regular doctor. See a doctor. That’s important. And that’s one of the things that I failed to do.”