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State attorney general seeks to suspend Dr. Howell's license

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Roachdale physician Dr. Ray D. Howell may already have announced that he has retired from private practice but that hasn't stopped the Indiana Attorney General's Office from taking action against him.

The 57-year-old doctor, who has operated Tri-County Family Medical Clinic in Roachdale for more than 20 years, was arrested Oct. 18 on 15 felony counts. A dozen of those involved the alleged unlawful or reckless dispensing of controlled substances.

Dr. Howell has posted $2,000 cash bond and will appear in Putnam County Court at 10 a.m. Dec. 8 for a pretrial conference.

However, possibly as early as this Thursday, Indiana Attorney General Gregory F. Zoeller hopes to have Dr. Howell's Indiana medical license suspended for 90 days.

Senior Deputy Attorney General Michael A. Minglin has filed a petition with the Medical Licensing Board of Indiana to that effect. It requests that the board set a hearing on the petition for summary suspension and suspend Dr. Howell's license "for a period of 90 days and for all other proper relief," the petition states.

"Generally speaking," said Erin Reece, public information officer for the Indiana Attorney General's Office, "an emergency suspension allows us to pursue our investigation while preventing an individual from practicing.

"The results of an investigation determine if our office files an administrative complaint with the appropriate board," she explained. "The board determines whether any violation occurred -- and if so, what disciplinary action to impose."

The next time the licensing board meets and could consider the petition for summary suspension is this Thursday in the Indiana Government Center South Building at Indianapolis. If it is not addressed then, the board's next meeting would not be until Dec. 1.

"Because this is a licensing case, we cannot disclose information beyond what is given in the Petition for Summary Suspension," Reece told the Banner Graphic.

Dr. Howell ran an advertisement in the Banner Graphic classified pages on Oct. 17, indicating he has retired, effective Sept. 30. He also has reportedly posted a sign to that effect at his Roachdale office.

Howell, who resides at Heritage Lake, is being represented by attorney Dennis E. Zahn of the Indianapolis law firm Voyles Zahn Paul Hogan and Merriman.

The doctor's arrest culminated a more than two-year investigation by local, state and federal authorities into his alleged reckless dispensing of narcotics and pain medication.

The investigation also yielded reports of several incidents of alleged sexual encounters with a number of female patients to whom he had reportedly prescribed excessive doses of controlled substances.

Nine female patients were interviewed by investigators, and six reported unwanted sexual advances or actual sexual acts allegedly occurring with Dr. Howell as a result of their visits to his office at 407 E. Forest Home Ave.

At least three of those counts allege that the excessive amounts of controlled substances the doctor prescribed were ostensibly written "to facilitate sexual encounters."

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Uh oh, gonna be a lot of grumpy housewives out and about for a while.

-- Posted by westforty on Wed, Oct 26, 2011, at 6:08 AM


-- Posted by everyonediesfamousinasmalltown on Wed, Oct 26, 2011, at 6:26 AM

Is the pretrial conference open to the public?

-- Posted by victimnomore on Wed, Oct 26, 2011, at 11:31 AM

why only temporary. oh i forget innocent until proven guilty. only nine women, i bet there is a lot more than that.

-- Posted by pukee on Wed, Oct 26, 2011, at 2:50 PM

Casey Anthony got off on her trial, anything is possible. It's in Gods hands and the judicial system.

-- Posted by Mystery1 on Wed, Oct 26, 2011, at 10:33 PM

I don't think he deserves to have bond; maybe he should stay in jail and "ponder" all his wrongdoings. I agree with pukee; if there are 9 women who came forth; there are probably 5 times that many that won't (mostly because of being embarassed by their situation or ruining their marriages). They are not entirely without guilt; but a doctor should hold himself to a much higher standard. My mother was his patient for awhile, and if he had tried anything with her she would have kicked him in the b----!

-- Posted by Michele1953 on Thu, Oct 27, 2011, at 11:28 AM

oh lay off him.... he thought he was doin the right thing. you can bet those women didnt hesitate to help out poor ole dr howell in exchange for a script of oxys. Shit i wish he woulda gave me the option lmao

-- Posted by amberdawn123 on Sun, Oct 30, 2011, at 7:37 AM

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