Arrest Warrants Issued for Several Oklahoma Bodybuilders
by Millard Baker
Oklahoma law enforcement have sent a clear message that they are targeting competitive bodybuilders who use anabolic steroids by issuing 10 arrest warrant, mostly for bodybuilders. The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Tulsa Police have been investigating the anabolic steroid and competitive bodybuilding scene for about two years. The purposely targeted middle- and upper-class competitive bodybuilders who used steroids solely for personal use (”Warrants Issued In Oklahoma Steroid Bust,” April 17).
Investigators say when they began the investigation two years ago; they vastly underestimated how bad the problem of anabolic steroid abuse was in Oklahoma. The bust doesn’t involve your average drug user. The accused are middle and upper class professionals. Some are accused of using steroids, others of selling or giving them away and agents say one man even ordered the raw ingredients from China to make his own.
National level NPC bodybuilders Trudy Ireland-Kline and Darrell Terrell and IFBB pro bodybuilder Sherry Smith (an Oklahoma City firefighter) are among the bodybuilders arrested for personal use of steroids. Other bodybuilders who allegedly obtained steroids for personal use include Brad Stahlheber and Tom Burke were arrested.
Derrick Davis was busted for operating an underground lab that imported raw steroid powders from China and prepared oral and injectable anabolic steroids.
Oklahoma authorities were assisted by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) and other federal law enforcement agencies. Oklahoma is the first state to specifically target competitive bodybuilders for violation of steroid possession laws.
At least three unidentified competitive bodybuilders obtained prescriptions for all of the steroids and ancillary medications that they used through face-to-face visits with Tulsa-area physician(s). Last year, IFBB Pro Guy Ducasse had prescriptions for personal quantities of pharmaceutical steroids and other medications when Tulsa Police searched his home. Ducasse was critical of news accounts portraying him as a “main distributor of anabolic steroids and other illegal performance drugs in Tulsa” and omitting the fact that he had prescriptions for all medications seized from his home.
Tulsa Police were not deterred by physician-prescribed anabolic steroids. When the bodybuilders ended up having prescriptions for the pharmaceutical steroids, police decided to pursue the doctor(s) who prescribed them. Dr. Gary Robert Lee, a family and sports medicine physician at Gilcrease Medical Center, prescribed stanozolol (Winstrol) and nandrolone (Deca Durabolin) for the “off-label” purpose of treating and assisting recovery from injuries to three bodybuilders. Tulsa County Assistant District Attorney Tony Evans filed felony anabolic steroid distribution charges against Dr. Lee this week (”Tulsa doctor charged over steroid prescriptions,” April 10).
The charge alleges that Lee wrote 28 prescriptions that were filled in Tulsa County pharmacies “for the purpose of building muscle bulk and muscle enhancement.”
The steroid witch-hunt targeting competitive bodybuilders is an ominous sign for NPC bodybuilding in Oklahoma and the state of competitive bodybuilder around the country should other states follow Oklahoma’s lead. Top officials in the IFBB and NPC publicly like to pretend that anabolic steroid use is uncommon in the sport of bodybuilding but the reality of the matter is hard to ignore.
Tulsa police issued a total of 10 arrest warrants and have promised more arrests. Only 6 individuals have been publicly named thus far. The fear that bodybuilders who use steroids solely for personal physique enhancement would be affected by the criminalization of steroids is becoming a reality.