Administrative Hearing Commission

Editor:
Richard Maseles, Esquire

CUBSUK not an obscene license plate, because most applicable definition of “suck” was non-sexual in nature. Meadows v. Director of Revenue, No. 11-1570 RV (A.H.C., June 18, 2012), Winn, C.

Meadows, a St. Louis Cardinals fan, obtained a personalized license plate 10 years ago that read, “CUBSUK.” After someone complained about the plate being inappropriate, the Director recalled the plate, and Meadows appealed.

Decision:
the Commission reversed the Director’s decision. The Commission decided that the plate was not obscene or offensive under 12 CSR 10-23.185 and therefore not subject to recall under § 301.144.3. While the Director argued that “SUK” derived from a sexual connotation and was therefore obscene, the most applicable dictionary definition of “suck” was “to be objectionable or inadequate.” Given the context of the Cardinals-Chicago Cubs rivalry, and the fact that the Director received only one complaint about the plate in 10 years, this definition was more applicable than the sexually-derived one. (Meadows also argued that § 301.144.3 was both facially unconstitutional and unconstitutional as applied. However, the Commission is generally not authorized to decide constitutional issues, and there were adequate grounds for the decision under Missouri statutes and regulations.)


License of Missouri pharmacist filling thousands of out-of-state prescriptions for controlled substances subject to discipline. Missouri Board of Pharmacy v. Rostie, No. 06-1510 PH (A.H.C., June 21, 2012), Nelson, C.

Rostie was contacted by a purported “agent” for three Texas doctors to fill their prescriptions from her pharmacy in Belton. Over a 14-month period, she filled over 27,000 such prescriptions, all for various combinations of Xanax, Vicodin, and codeine-based cough syrup, and mailed them to the purported agent in Houston. There was an assembly-line sameness to the patient names (i.e., on one day, of 56 prescriptions from one doctor, 32 were from “patients” named Johnson), the quantities rarely varied, some of the prescriptions were unsigned, none were paid for by insurance, and Rostie was paid in cash. The Board sought to discipline Rostie’s license. The case was held in abeyance for about three years while federal criminal charges against Rostie were pending.

Decision
: Rostie’s license was subject to discipline for incompetency, misconduct, gross negligence, violation of professional trust or confidence, and violations of state and federal drug laws. Rostie’s argument that each prescription appeared legitimate on its face failed, because even a cursory examination of the prescription volume and type showed that they were not legitimate, the “agent’s” role was clearly illegitimate, and the patient names were highly suspicious. Rostie’s criminal conviction played no role in the decision, because the board did not allege it as a ground for discipline.