Friday, October 30, 2020

Former Maury County hospital employee indicted for stealing $600,000 worth of hospital supplies

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“Brazen!” That’s the way District Attorney Brent Cooper describes the alleged crimes of a former Maury County Hospital worker accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of medical supplies.

The investigation into Tommy John Riker began last August.

It concluded this past Monday, with the indictment of the former Maury Regional Hospital employee who worked in the Supply Chain Department, where they receive shipping and disperse items within the hospital.

The 39-year-old surrendered himself to the Maury County Jail on the charges.

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22nd Judicial District District Attorney Brent Cooper says, “It looked like most of his customers were fire departments, ambulance services, different places like that all across the country.”

According to Cooper, the hospital reached out to his department to launch the investigation. Cooper tells News 2, from Jan 2017 until august 2019,

Riker is accused of stealing more than $600,000 worth of hospital supplies
and selling those items for personal gain on eBay.

Cooper says,” we don’t think any of the customers who were buying had any idea that these items were stolen.”

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According to the veteran investigator, Tommy Goetz, over a 2 year period, Riker allegedly stole over 2,000 syringes, more than 5,000 surgical bandages, and 600 hemostats.

Investigators say these items cost the hospital $658,000.

Investigators tell News 2, Riker pocketed more than a $1.4 million dollars.

Cooper says, “he worked in the supply chain part of the hospital, so he had easy access.”

The bandages are hemostatic surgical cellulose dressings. Cooper says “the bandages apply to open wounds and they will close the wounds immediately, they are used by emergency personnel and military, those were hot items.”

According to the D.A., Tommy Riker s charged with theft over $250,000 which is a class A felony that is the same classification as 2nd-degree murder. It carries a punishment of 15 to 25 years.

Riker is also indicted on 54 counts of money laundering. Cooper says each count of money laundering could result in 8 to 12 years in prison.

Cooper credits his investigators for thoroughly looking into this case.

“Once again, Investigator Goetz conducted a thorough and fair investigation into these allegations. Fortunately, as far as we know, no patients of Maury Regional Hospital were negatively effected by Mr. Riker’s actions. The DA’s office appreciates MRH bringing this matter to our attention so that it could be dealt with appropriately, through the legal system.”

Cooper says the timing of the pandemic is troubling.

“Certainly, with what’s going on now with this pandemic, seems a little more brazen than it would have six months ago.”

Maury Regional Health became aware of an alleged misappropriation of assets in August 2019. Upon conducting an internal investigation, we engaged the District Attorney’s office and they have indicted former employee Tommy Riker following an extensive investigation. Mr. Riker was employed from 2016-2019.

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Riker is currently out of jail on $100,000 bond while he waits for the next court proceeding.

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