Surgical tech in syringe swap scandal could get more prison time after violating court order

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DENVER — Former Swedish Medical Center surgical technician Rocky Allen, who pleaded guilty to swapping out syringes full of painkillers, could be sentenced to additional time in prison after violating the terms of his bond.

On Nov. 7, Allen was sentenced to 78 months in prison but released on bond until he was required to surrender.

At the end of the sentencing hearing, Allen asked for permission to visit his family in Idaho before beginning his sentence. The request was denied.

According to court documents filed Monday, Allen contacted his supervising probation officer in late November and advised that he wanted to surrender early.

Allen made arrangements with his case manager at the halfway house he was required to stay as a condition of bond to leave on Nov. 23 and travel to a Bureau of Prisons facility in Oregon.

Allen left the halfway house on Nov. 23 but did not travel to Oregon.

“Instead, notwithstanding and in disobedience of and resistance to the Court’s order and ruling of November 7, 2016, Defendant traveled to Idaho to visit and spend time with his family,” court documents read.

Allen has been ordered to return to Colorado and will face a charge of criminal contempt.

Rocky Allen

Rocky Allen

Allen was charged with one count of tampering with a consumer product and one count obtaining a controlled substance by deceit, and faced up to 14 years behind bars and a $500,000 fine.

He was arrested and charged in February after being indicted by a federal grand jury.

Allen was accused of changing syringes and putting thousands of patients at risk. He worked at Swedish from August 2015 to January and was accused of diverting the painkiller fentanyl from the facility.

In June, it was revealed Allen had tested positive for HIV. The blood tests were released with Allen’s consent through the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Results of the blood test show Allen carries HIV (subtype B) and that he is negative for hepatitis B and C, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said at the time, but there had been no reported cases of transmission.

Swedish Medical Center is offering free testing for any patients who might have been affected.