Your guess is as good as mine as to why it took so long to finally start doing something about the opioid epidemic in this country. So many have died at the hand of painkillers of all types.

This doctor from a small town in Virginia (pop;13,000) prescribed over 500,000 opioids in a 2 year period. Prosecutors stated he was running an interstate drug ring.

Dr Joel Smithers was convicted of more than 800 counts of illegally prescribing opioids resulting in the death of at least one woman.. Dr Smithers did not accept insurance. Before federal agents raided his office, he had accumulated over $700,000 in cash and credit cardpayments.

According to Agent  Fong of the DEA, Dr Smithers flooding the region with opioids and "hid behind his white doctor's coat as a large scale drug dealer". His practice was open for less than 2 years.

Dr Smithers faced life in prison and was sentenced to 40 years behind bars.

(New York Times)

Get the 'Loon Extra' Newsletter

Sign up for our newsletter and get the latest Minnesota & rock news in your inbox a couple times a week. If we're not awesome, drop us like a hot potato.