Carol Velasquez of Aiken, was arrested Tuesday on 12 counts of unlawful practice of medicine and five counts of obtaining or procuring prescription drugs. She was later released after posting a $1,500 bond and faces a May 28 pretrial hearing.
Jail records did not indicate whether Velasquez has an attorney and there was no telephone listing for her in Aiken.
The Indianapolis Star reports Velasquez, 49, was indicted by a Marion County grand jury. Court documents allege that Velasquez administered labor-inducing drugs and other medications to women she was helping with deliveries in 2009 and 2010, but that she lacked the proper training to give the drugs.
“This is not an indictment of midwifery in general or the practices associated with it. Our concern in this case is the administration and the obtaining of drugs without the proper authority to do so,” said Deputy Prosecutor Kristina Korobov.
Velasquez is listed as a licensed midwife in South Carolina – a state which does not require a person acting as a midwife to be a nurse.
But Indiana law contains more stringent requirements.
Velasquez, who formerly lived in Indiana, is named in an Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department report from March 2011, involving the death of a newborn. But it’s unclear from the police report what role Velasquez played in the baby’s birth or death, or what action police took in the case.
A South Carolina woman whom Velasquez helped with a home birth nine weeks ago told The Star she was shocked by the charges.
“She was very caring and knowledgeable, and I would be surprised if she did anything illegal, said Jessica Cote, 33, of North Augusta. Velasquez delivered Cote’s daughter without complications.
Cote said she’s used a midwife in the births of the last two of her four children and believes they provide more time and more personalized care than the doctors who delivered her first two children.
“I felt like (Velasquez) had a very comprehensive idea of what was going on with my pregnancy and my general health and, even though this was my fourth child, we spent a lot of time talking about safety and precautions,” she said.