Mimi Hart has filled plenty of prescriptions at her independent pharmacy in Cincinnati, but one seemed a little off.
It was a prescription for a large quantity of high-strength oxycodone, an opioid widely prescribed to manage pain. The paper felt peculiar and the handwriting didn't look like the doctor's signature, said Hart, the owner of Hart Pharmacy in the West Price Hill neighborhood.
"You have to be vigilant," she said. "The feel of the paper is different once it goes through acetone—you can tell. We have a phone chain for bad scripts, and sure enough, they had been to multiple pharmacies."
The fake prescription was a part of an elaborate drug ring orchestrated several years ago, where people seeking the addictive painkiller would use acetone to wash off the ink and create a new prescription. After making several calls to neighboring pharmacies, Hart found out that the pill-seekers went to multiple pharmacies in the Cincinnati area to try and score more. She passed on the information to the Cincinnati drug diversion law enforcement officer, who apprehended the criminals.