Canfield doctor accused of illegally prescribing painkillers

A Mahoning County Grand Jury has filed more than 70 criminal charges against a Canfield doctor.

Doctor William Paloski is accused of illegally prescribing painkillers for more than four decades.

Investigators say the 73-year-old has illegally prescribed painkillers to patients for years out of his Market Street office in Youngstown.

After a two and a half year investigation, he's now facing multiple charges, including illegally prescribing pain killers and drug trafficking.

“This doctor was putting out primarily promethazine with codeine,” said Jeff Solic, commander of the Mahoning Valley Task Force. “It's like a recreational purple drink, they call it on the street.”

Jeff Solic says these bottles were selling for more than $500 on the street.

“This is not something where an addict was going in and using it themselves,” said Martin Desmond, assistant prosecuting attorney. “This is where they were coming in and getting the drugs. They may have used it themselves, but they were selling it beyond their own use. So, these drugs were going out into our own streets, and that's a real problem.”

One thing that caught the attention of investigators: a line of people stretching from around the corner and down the street, often as early as 3 a.m.

“We call that a clue in law enforcement,” Solic said. “It's not rocket science. There is a lot of hard work that went into this, but we just followed the clues.”

The investigators posed as patients at Paloski's office, which is now shut down.

They also found several bottles of the cough syrup in homes they would raid for drugs.

“The importance about this case is you have an individual who reporters to have a legitimate business who was doing illegitimate activities,” Desmond said.

If convicted, Paloski will face several years in prison. He is scheduled to be arraigned next week.

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