Cop of the Month

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The Upper East Side's 19th precinct recognizes Sergeant Brian Geoghan and Officer Charles Zwilling

Sergeant Brian Geoghan, a 17-year veteran field intelligence supervisor, and Officer Charles Zwilling, a 9-year-veteran field intelligence officer were recently awarded the 19th Precinct's cop of the month honor for helping to nab a doctor who was illegally selling prescription medication to a known drug trafficking organization.

Sergeant Geoghan and Officer Zwilling, along with the 19th precinct's intelligence officers, led an 18-month investigation that led to the arrest and indictment of Dr. Robert S. Gibbs, a doctor of internal medicine in West Harlem, for knowingly writing oxycodone prescriptions for individuals that were collected by a drug trafficking ring. Ronald Vaughan, the leader of the drug trafficking organization, was also arrested in the 58-count indictment for allegedly obtaining over $150,000 of prescriptions, and distributing them on the black market.

Sergeant Geoghan and Officer Zwilling arrested Gibbs and Vaughan on January 31st, but the conspiracy between the two alleged criminals dates back to 2009. Sergeant Geoghan and his anti-crime team first became aware of the drug-trafficking scheme in 2011 when they received a tip about illegal prescription drug transactions taking place outside an Upper East Side pharmacy. From there, Sergeant Geoghan received information about Vaughan's connections with a doctor. His officers made several arrests in the area of drug runners connected to Vaughan in the summer of 2011. Following the arrests, there was a sharp decline in the number of drugs prescribed by Gibbs, but the prescription numbers rose again last summer. The investigators then established a connection between Vaughan, the previously arrested runners, and Dr. Gibbs.

At the time of Dr. Gibbs' arrest, the officers found medical and financial records, as well as $45,000 in cash in the basement of his building. Gibbs faces 42 counts of criminal sale of a prescription for a controlled substance, one count of conspiracy and three counts of criminal facilitation. Vaughan faces two counts of conspiracy, one count of attempted criminal possession, and 10 counts of fraud and deceit.

"Dr. Gibbs betrayed his profession and Ronald Vaughan built an organization with one goal: to rake in hundreds of thousands of dollars selling addictive drugs," said Special Narcotics Prosecutor Bridget Brennan. "[This arrest] marks the end of their poisonous partnership."

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