Borough doctor charged with not paying employee

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Carl Schiano’s former medical practice on Rubber Avenue. Schiano was arrested Tuesday and charged with not paying one his former employees. –RA ARCHIVE

NAUGATUCK — Police on Tuesday arrested Carl Schiano, who practiced as a primary care physician in Naugatuck until last fall, on charges of failing to pay wages to his former assistant.

Megan Bartlett, who lives in the borough and worked for Schiano last year at his 59 Rubber Ave. practice, said last fall that she had filed a wage complaint with the state Department of Labor. Bartlett was owed more than $2,200 in wages earned between April 25 and May 25 of last year, said Gary Pechie, director of wage and workplace standards at the labor department.

Schiano, 53, voluntarily came into borough police headquarters Tuesday to answer questions about a motor vehicle incident and was arrested after officers discovered the Department of Labor warrant for his arrest, Lt. Robert Harrison of the Naugatuck Police Department said. Schiano gave his address as 157 City Hill St. He was released on a $1,000 bond to appear April 11 in Waterbury Superior Court.

The Department of Labor was in contact with Schiano during its investigation, but he could not produce proof that he had paid Bartlett the disputed wages, Pechie said. If convicted of the felony charge, Schiano faces a fine of $2,000 to $5,000. He could also be imprisoned for up to five years.

The arrest comes at time when Schiano’s license is suspended, pending a hearing next week.

Schiano suddenly deserted his practice last year, leaving patients with no way to contact him and no indication of his whereabouts. He left the Roxbury home he rented at about the same time, and former patients told the Department of Public Health that he slept in his car before moving in with them in Middlebury.

The patients said they kicked him out after he stole from them.

Citing drug abuse and failure to provide continuity of care for his patients, the Connecticut Medical Examining Board suspended Schiano’s license in February, pending an April 13 hearing. His license was also suspended for three months in 2006 after the board found he had abused methadone.