John Andrew Welden wasn’t ready to have a baby. But rather than own up to his actions and stand by his pregnant girlfriend, he took a sneakier route and slipped Remee Jo Lee, 27, miscarriage-inducing pills. She soon lost the baby, and is now suing the Florida pharmacy that filled Welden’s prescription.
Welden, 28, never actually saw a doctor about acquiring Cytotec, a stomach-ulcer medication known to cause miscarriage. He instead opted to forge his physician father’s signature on a prescription pad.
Once he got the bottle of Cytotec, which instructed Lee to “Take 3 tablets sublingually three times daily for three days,” Welden changed the name of the drug on the label to “Amoxicillin: 125mg oral tablets.”
At home, Welden convinced Lee that his father, an obstetrician, had told him she had an infection, and that she needed to take an antibiotic. Lee did take the drug, and miscarried several days later.
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As part of their investigation, police officers found text messages between the couple indicating that Lee wanted to keep her baby, but her boyfriend did not.
Welden pled guilty to a federal tampering charge, and is garnering a plea deal that will likely send him to prison for 13 years. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for December.
The pharmacist who gave Welden the toxic prescription is considered a co-conspirator because he allegedly knew that Welden would be altering the label and changing the contents.
Lee has filed a suit in Hillsborough Circuit Court against Sunlake Pharmacy in Lutz, where Welden obtained the prescription. According to the suit, “a reasonably competent, concerned and safe pharmacist would have recognized the prescription ... was grossly in error.”
Lee was six to seven weeks pregnant when she lost her baby.