Man who once trained police arrested for alleged doctor shopping

Man who once trained police arrested for alleged doctor shopping

PITT COUNTY - A man who once helped teach police about mental illness and substance abuse has been arrested for allegedly committing prescription fraud.

According to the Pitt County Sheriff's Office, investigators received information in July that John Damon Scalise was obtaining narcotics from two separate healthcare professionals without coordinating his care (a.k.a. doctor shopping).

The alleged crime happened on June 13, deputies said.

Detectives said they interviewed healthcare providers, Scarlise himself, and obtained the necessary documents from local pharmacies.

As a result, Scalise, 43, is charged with one count of obtaining a controlled substance by misrepresentation, the Pitt County Sheriff's Office said. The suspect turned himself in to authorities on Tuesday and received a $3,000 unsecured bond.

Scalise had previously worked at East Carolina Behavioral Health in Greenville as a Crisis Intervention Team coordinator. He led exercises that taught Greenville police officers about mental illness, substance abuse and developmental disabilities.

The training was designed to teach officers how to properly respond to crisis situations involving those with mental illness.

East Carolina Behavioral Health released a statement to NewsChannel 12 Thursday, saying Scalise had resigned from ECBH on July 17.

"The incident in question is in no way related to Mr. Scalise's employment with East Carolina Behavioral Health. The primary focus of East Carolina Behavioral Health is and always has been the people it serves; the delivery of services; and the health, safety and welfare of its employees," said Leza Wainwright of ECBH.

The Pitt County Sheriff's office is not releasing the type of narcotic Scalise is accused of shopping for.

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