Adjournment in contemplation of dismissal granted after doctor allegedly takes vaccine dose home to wife


HAMBURG, N.Y. (WIVB) — An adjournment in contemplation of dismissal has been granted in the case of a local doctor who was accused of taking a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine home to his wife.

This past February, Dr. Roy DeFrancis, 74, was volunteering at a vaccine distribution clinic at ECC South when he allegedly took a single dose of the vaccine without authorization.

The Erie County District Attorney’s Office says DeFrancis’ wife did qualify for a vaccine at the time, due to her age.

“This incident occurred during a period of time when there was a limited number of vaccines available to adults with certain qualifications. While it was improper, our investigation found that this doctor’s intention was to bring home a dose of the vaccine to his wife, which potentially may have gone unused before the end of the day. Under New York State guidelines at the time of the alleged incident, his wife did qualify to receive a vaccine, but he should have gone through the proper procedure to make an appointment. Today, there is an abundance of COVID-19 vaccines available and I consented to the dismissal of this case in the interest of justice.”

Erie County District Attorney John Flynn

On Friday morning, DeFrancis was arraigned on one count of petit larceny. There, Hamburg Town Court Justice Carl Morgan granted an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal.

If convicted, DeFrancis could have been sentenced to a year in jail. No return court date is going to be scheduled.

MORE | Here are the places where you can get a vaccine.

Evan Anstey is a digital content producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.

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