Accused fraudulent doctor arrested again
On Tuesday Tuscaloosa police arrested a Moundville woman and charged her with practicing medicine without a license and attempting to commit controlled substances crime. This was the day she was first arrested for practicing medicine without a license.
Ellory Kate Johnson was arrested at the establishment she claimed was her clinic, MentorUp Life Lab on Jack Warner Parkway in Tuscaloosa. “Over the weekend, investigators with our financial crimes unit got information that a white female, 31 years of age, was practicing medicine in the city of Tuscaloosa without a doctor’s license,” Lt. Donny Emerson with TPD said. Johnson posted her bond and was released.
Then on Wednesday, she was arrested again, this time for doing business without a business license.
“It looks legitimate on the front end,” Emerson said. “But when you start digging a little deeper you cannot find any information about her, or her medical license, or medical career, or anything like that. It’s still kind of a new practice. We believe it has been operating for about two months, so they haven’t had a lot of clients yet. One of the things that tipped us off was somebody went to get a prescription that she had written and tried to get it filled and the pharmacist knew something was off with the prescription, so they did not fill it.”
WVUA 23 was the only media outlet at the office when Johnson was served, handcuffed, and taken back to jail Wednesday.
“We do believe there was a legitimate doctor working out of the practice,” Emerson said. “What role he had in this, we are still trying to determine that. There could be other people involved here. This lady does have a history in this area of doing these sorts of things, not necessarily to this degree, but she does have a history of doing fraudulent activities in our area.”
Court records show it hasn’t been long since Johnson was in trouble with the law.
She was arrested in 2021 for impersonating a peace officer and just last year for identity theft and theft in the first degree.
“We have heard from former employees who reached out to us here recently,” Emerson said. “They knew something was off with the business and they came in and shared the things that were going on. But as far as patients, we have not gotten any feedback from them yet. Something we do need is to hear from them though, because they could help.”
So how do you keep from being scammed like this? TPD has some tips.
“If a new clinic pops up, you can Google most doctors and find out what their credentials are to make sure they are verified,” Emerson said. “A little background check on this female and this business and you would have started to see the red flags. They would have been raised. Listen to your gut. If it doesn’t seem legitimate, it’s probably not…so just make sure you do your research before you go to these news clinics like this.”
Johnson bonded out of jail once again on Wednesday. Tuscaloosa Police want to hear from you if you were a patient at MentorUp Life Lab.