A Clearwater doctor is accused of writing fraudulent prescriptions so she could get controlled substances for herself.
Dr. Lynne Columbus, 50, was arrested Monday at Gulf Coast Pain Management on Eastland Boulevard in Clearwater. She is facing two counts of obtaining or attempting to obtain controlled substances by fraud.
According to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, the investigation started last month after detectives received a tip that Columbus was writing prescriptions for oxycodone using patients' names and filling them for herself.
Detectives said Columbus, whose residence is listed as Tampa, filled those prescriptions at several pharmacies around Pinellas County. Investigators said they have surveillance video shows Columbus picking up one of those prescriptions for oxycodone.
The website for Columbus' practice indicates that she served on Pinellas County's prescription advisory committee, which collaborated with commissioners on a 2010 ordinance to crack down on pill mills.
Columbus' background makes her arrest all the more surprising to those who know her.
"She's a wonderful person, wonderful doctor," neighbor Ernie Alonso said. "I just cannot believe that."
Detectives arrested her and took her to Pinellas County Jail without further incident. She was released later in the day on $10,000 bond.
The investigation continues.