Laketran bus driver accused of selling prescription drugs

A Laketran bus driver appeared in Willoughby Municipal Court on Monday on a felony drug trafficking charge.  Karen L. Kuhn, 56, of 6405 Timeless Lane in Madison, was arrested on Thursday by Willoughby police and the Lake County Narcotics Agency, said special agent Alex Friel with the agency.

The agency had received information that Kuhn was selling prescription drugs, which she had legally obtained through a doctor, Friel said.  While he does not know if she was “on the clock,” Friel said Kuhn was observed selling 60 milligram tablets of Oxycontin and 10 milligram tablets of Percocet.

According to court records, Kuhn sold 10 tablets of Oxycontin at Heinen’s grocery store at 34501 Ridge Road in Willoughby. She was charged with drug trafficking, a third-degree felony.  Judge Harry Field set Kuhn’s bond at $10,000 personal. A preliminary hearing has been set for March 21.

In a statement released Monday afternoon, Laketran said Kuhn is on unpaid leave, pending the outcome of the investigation. The agency also said it had no prior knowledge of any of the alleged illegal activity until notified by LCNA. “Laketran has a long standing history of working very closely with law enforcement agencies and is fully cooperating with LCNA in the investigation of this matter,” the company said.

According to the statement, all Laketran employees are required to sign a statement about understanding the law regarding alcohol and controlled substances.  “When provided with evidence of illegal activity on its buses or its property, Laketran takes swift and significant steps to investigate, correct, and discipline those involved, as appropriate,” the company said. “We hold our drivers to a very high standard of professionalism and customer service. This incident is not indicative of our drivers or employees and is an isolated incident.” Laketran added that safety is the company’s “main concern” and that all of its local, in-county and express buses are equipped with video and audio surveillance equipment.

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