Walton County school nurse faces felony charges for medication discrepancies

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WALTON COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) -- A school nurse is facing two felony counts of child neglect following an investigation into irregularities of student medication at Paxton School.

On May 21, the Walton County Sheriff's Office launched a investigation into discrepancies in student medication. The report was initiated by Paxton School Principal Cindy Neale after a parent discovered her child’s prescriptions had appeared to be altered. Paxton School Nurse Jacquetta Lowry, 40, of Laurel Hill was immediately placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.

After close examination, investigators found one case where a prescription of Adderall was replaced by Ranitidine, a medication used for heartburn and indigestion. The student told investigators he noticed Nurse Lowry giving him a medication that didn’t look like his prescription. She apologized, then gave him a medication that he said tasted like peppermint.

A separate case uncovered a child’s Vyvanse capsules had been emptied. The student in this case remembered on multiple occasions receiving medication from Nurse Lowry that was not the same color as his Vyvanse prescription. After confronting her, he was given a capsule that appeared to be his medication, but didn’t feel the effects. His mother took him for urinalysis and the test showed no traces of Vyvanse in his system.

Lowry was arrested and charged with two counts of child neglect. She was booked into the Walton County Jail without incident Thursday.

In April 2018 Lowry and four other nurses were investigated in Florala following the disappearance of more than 500 Norco pills from a drug cart. Charges were never filed.

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