A former Hilo Medical Center nurse was charged with various offenses including prescription drug theft and possession of the synthetic opioid fentanyl.
The Hawai‘i County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office filed a felony information charging document against Allison Elizabeth Kawamura, 38, of Pa‘auilo, in Hilo’s 3rd Circuit Court on Sept. 23. The charges presented to a judge were in relation to two separate incidents that occurred in April at the hospital.
The charging document, which was submitted with a signed declaration of probable cause by the investigating officer, accuses Kawamura of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud, deceit, misrepresentation, embezzlement or theft. She’s also accused of possessing one-fourth ounce or more of fentanyl.
The 38-year-old was charged with two counts of prohibited acts, third-degree promotion of a dangerous drug and second-degree promotion of a dangerous drug.
According to court records, a bench warrant for her arrested was issued on Monday with bail set $55,000. Kawamura appeared in court Friday where her defense counsel requested for supervised release or a bail reduction, which was denied.
Kawamura has since posted cash bail and is scheduled to appear in court again on Dec. 5.
Big Island Now reached out to Hilo Medical Center regarding its former employee and would not comment on when Kawamura started working at the hospital. They refused to provide any comment in relation to the arrest.
Hawai‘i police have confirmed the spread of fentanyl throughout the community, particularly in West Hawaii for the past several months.
On Tuesday, Hawai‘i’s High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Agency issued a drug threat bulletin warning a large amount of fentanyl had been shipped to the Big Island. HPD confirmed Wednesday in a press release that officers have seen the recent arrival of pills, known as rainbow fentanyl because it resembles candy.