Federal charges filed for theft of PPE, sanitizer and drugs from Indiana hospital

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Two women were charged on federal drug, conspiracy and burglary charges on allegations they stole personal protective equipment and sanitizer. (Getty Images)

Two women were charged on federal drug, conspiracy and burglary charges on allegations they stole personal protective equipment (PPE) and sanitizer—in addition to morphine—from an Indiana hospital. 

Officials said two women broke into a restricted medication storage area at a Central Indiana Cancer Center and stole 30 syringes of morphine. PPE, as well as seven boxes of isolation masks, 50 tubs of sanitary wipes, 10 containers of soap, 20 bottles of hand sanitizer, eight bottles of air deodorizer and six tubs of bleach wipes, were also taken. 

Investigators allege one of the women was April Hayworth, a member of the cleaning crew at the hospital, and the second woman was Christina Smith, officials said. They said Smith allegedly planned on selling the morphine. 

RELATED: DOJ boasts $2.6B in healthcare fraud settlements, judgments in 2019

“During this COVID19 pandemic, it is vitally important to protect our medical system and the supplies that are needed to treat patients and protect our medical workers,” said United States Attorney Josh J. Minkler in a statement.

“These individuals were trying to make some quick money at the cost of endangering innocent lives," he said. "This conduct will not be tolerated during a pandemic or ever.”

If found guilty, Hayworth and Smith face up to 20 years imprisonment, three years of supervised release and a maximum fine of $1 million.

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