Jack P. Sherman, Attorney at Law
Free Initial Consultation

Tennessee doctor faces up to 20 years on drug crimes charges

If you drive northeast of Memphis for about six hours, you will come to Clay County. Though there are only approximately 8,000 residents in the small county, it has the dubious distinction of having the highest rate of opioids dispensed per capita than anywhere else in Tennessee.

A 65-year-old family doctor there was recently arrested on drug charges for allegedly violating the Controlled Substances Act by prescribing Schedule II and Schedule IV drugs. Prosecutors say the doctor overprescribed opiates and benzodiazepines for no legitimate medical purpose to people he knew were abusing the drugs.

If convicted on all charges, Dr. Gilbert Ghearing could be sentenced to up to 20 years in a federal prison, as well as a $1 million fine, the Tennessean reported.

Prosecutors claim that his illegal prescriptions were written between August of 2016 and February of this year.

Two days before his arrest by federal agents at his office in Celina, he had reportedly purchased a one-way ticket to the Marshall Islands. The Pacific Ocean islands are about 6,500 miles from his home.

Prosecutors say that the Ghearing continued to prescribe benzodiazepines and opioids to one patient even after the patient overdosed and his mother contacted the doctor to tell him her son was abusing the prescriptions.

Brand-name benzodiazepines include Valium, Klonopin and Xanax, among others.

The combination of benzodiazepines and opioids is a dangerous one, experts say, with nearly a third of all overdoses involving a mixture of the two.

A Celina pharmacist who worked at the pharmacy next door to Ghearing’s practice was indicted for nearly two dozen alleged violations of the Controlled Substances Act two weeks before the doctor’s arrest.

Those facing these kinds of serious allegations should speak with a Memphis lawyer experienced in drug crime defense.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Let Us Help Protect Your Rights Call 901-233-3474 for a free initial consultation or email us below:

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Protecting the rights of criminal defense clients in Memphis and its surrounding counties

Jack P. Sherman, Attorney at Law
200 Jefferson Ave.
Suite 700
Memphis, TN 38103

Phone: 901-646-4270
Phone: 901-233-3474
Fax: 901-522-1398
Memphis Law Office Map

Review Us
Jack P. Sherman Attorney at Law
Get Advice From A Lawyer