A PHARMACY assistant who stole more than 700 boxes of prescription medication worth nearly $12,000 is unlikely to ever practice again.
Between 2012 and 2014 Narida Thomason, of Clancey Street, Warrnambool, stole hundreds of boxes of painkillers and prescription medication, the Warrnambool Magistrates Court heard.
She was yesterday convicted and sentenced to a three-month suspended sentence.
“This was a serious breach of trust. Not only to your employer but to the community and everyone in your life who assumed you were doing the right thing,” magistrate Ann McGarvie told the accused.
Thomason, 43, had worked at the Warrnambool pharmacy on a casual basis for eight years but began removing items in 2012.
Police Prosecutor Senior Constable Kevin Mullins said stock reports were done by management in January this year which found items were disappearing.
“The head pharmacist discovered that items went missing the days the accused was working,” Senior Constable Mullins said.
Ms Thomason would often place cash in the till to account for taking the prescription drugs, which included panadeine forte, duromine, endep and valpam.
Thomason pleaded guilty to 41 counts of theft.
Thomason would also send text messages to her partner asking what medications to bring home and asking for “anything we’re short on”.
“Every time she works the conversation was what they had at home and what drugs she needed to be stealing,” Senior Constable Mullins said.
Defence counsel Amanda Chambers said her client had struggled with depression, obsessive compulsive disorder and had faced difficulty as a new parent.
She described Thomason as being “almost in a state of crisis” and said she had stolen some medications to treat her depression.
“She was treating herself with the ailments that had been diagnosed to her by treating practitioners,” Ms Chambers said, adding her client had no prior criminal history.
Thomason was convicted and fined $1000 and ordered to repay $11,976 in compensation for the stolen medication.