Jeffrey Frederick, 24, was arrested after trying to rob Urgent Pain Management in Lake Worth, Florida. According to news reports, Frederick supposedly became very angry after being denied pain medication. After leaving the pain clinic, he returned with a gun and threatened the staff. This resulted in an altercation with one of the doctors during which, Frederick is said to have pointed the gun at the doctor and pulled the trigger. When the gun didn’t fire, Frederick supposedly hit the doctor with the gun. At some point during the incident, Frederick demanded money. (Photo Credit: Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office)
Frederick did not act alone. According to the Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office, Friendley Sertile, 21, allegedly acted as a getaway driver. After robbing the Urgent Pain Management clinic, Jeffrey Frederick fled on foot to a nearby mobile home park where he met Sertile.
However, an eye witness was able to take down the license plate number from Sertile’s car. This vehicle was ultimately tracked down to an apartment complex near the Palm Beach State College campus. A SWAT team was called and the two bandits were taken into custody after peacefully surrendering.
This case presents the ugly truth behind the pain clinic epidemic in our community. While it is easy to label Jeffrey Frederick as some maniac with a gun, and he sure seems to be, the truth is that he was likely acting out because he is probably addicted to the very pain pills that Urgent Pain Management refused to dispense.
As this case shows, drug offenses are not the only crimes associated with pain clinics.
While we cannot pass judgment on Urgent Pain Management because it is unknown whether or not they are a legitimate clinic, Frederick’s actions are not surprising, given the hoards of zombie-like drug addicts pain clinics in our community have created.
As law enforcement agencies like the DEA crack down on pain clinics, the unlimited free buffet at the pain clinics is sure to come to an end. Given the extreme chemical dependence these drugs have created in their users, I am sure that the future will be peppered with many incidents like this one.
Taking away a pain pill addict’s drug makes that addict into a desperate person willing to do whatever it takes to get his fix. Personally, I think there is nothing more dangerous than standing in between a drug addict and his high. Just look at what they do to themselves… just imagine what they would do to you!
For his actions, Jeffrey Frederick will likely be charged with armed robbery, aggravated assault with deadly weapon, aggravated battery, and even attempted murder. Since he used a gun in the commission of his crime, he will likely face enhanced penalties under Florida’s 10-20-LIFE laws.
Either way, it is safe to assume that he will be spending a serious amount of time in prison.
Insofar as a defense is concerned, Frederick’s criminal defense lawyer will need to thoroughly investigate this case before deciding on a legal strategy. This will call for a detailed analysis of any and all police reports, witness statements, as well as conducting depositions on any and all witness listed by prosecutors in their case.
While misidentification is a common defense used in armed robbery cases, I would think that the doctor and the staff members at the clinic will be able to identify Frederick because he is known to them as a patient. If this crime allegedly occurred between strangers, a criminal defense lawyers may have been able to challenge the witnesses’ ability to identify Frederick as the robber.
While this is being done, Frederick needs to have a confidential competency evaluation as well as a substance abuse evaluation.
In the event that Jeffrey Frederick’s criminal defense lawyer determines that his case cannot be won at trial, the only mitigating factor in this case is Frederick’s likely drug addiction. While being a drug addict is certainly no excuse, Frederick’s criminal defense lawyer may be able to get his prison sentenced reduced, even if only a little, due to the fact that Frederick may have acted because of a drug addiction.
While some of the facts of this case have been reported in the media, it is important to understand that much more detailed information is needed before any conclusions may be drawn. It is equally important to recognize that Jeffrey Frederick is innocent until proven guilty and that so far, this case amounts to nothing more than mere allegations.
Hopefully, this case will be resolved based on the evidence and all those involved will receive fair justice.