Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
E-mail this article
Print this Article

A St. Mary’s woman who told court officials that she works as a federal aviation contract specialist has been arrested on charging papers alleging that she called a pharmacy last month for a refill of her husband’s pain medication, a week after he died.

Melissa Helen Luppino, 47, of Leonardtown was released on personal recognizance after she was charged with attempting to obtain tramadol by fraud, and with the unlawful possession of lorazepam, an anti-anxiety medication. She said Monday from her workplace in Washington, D.C., that she will contest the charges.

Police found Kent Richard Luppino, 49, dead in the couple’s home Feb. 14, court papers state, and a spokesperson for the state medical examiner’s office said this week that an autopsy determined that he died from natural causes, specifically hypertensive cardiovascular disease.

Charging papers allege that Melissa Luppino called in a refill for her husband’s tramadol prescription March 23 to St. John’s Pharmacy in Hollywood, where an employee notified police, and she arrived and paid for the drugs before law officers approached her in her vehicle in the parking lot. Police also found several prescription pill bottles in her purse, court papers state, including four lorazepam pills, for which she did not have a prescription.

Her husband also had a prescription for that drug, and during the investigation of his death, “not all of the pills were accounted for,” according to a statement of probable cause filed by St. Mary’s sheriff’s Cpl. David Corcoran.