News 4 Investigates: DA confirms former top state vaccine official did not send muzzle to herself
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - News4 Investigates obtained a memorandum from the Davidson County District Attorney confirming that investigators determined Dr. Michelle Fiscus did not send herself a dog muzzle last year, following a controversial memo about the Mature Minor Doctrine in Tennessee.
The doctrine would allow minors above the age of 14 to receive medical care without parental consent, including getting a COVID-19 vaccine. The memo sparked anger among Republican state legislators, who held a hearing admonishing the Department of Health for how it was communicating about the vaccine, including through online posts. The Department of Health later removed those online post.
The latest findings of that now-infamous muzzle are bittersweet.
“This report appears to vindicate you. But I’ve got to ask - is the damage already done?” News 4 said.
“There’s been considerable damage as a result of this,” Fiscus said.
Fiscus reported receiving the muzzle in July 2021. A Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security investigation into the source of the muzzle found it was purchased with a credit card belonging to Fiscus, although it was later determined a duplicate Amazon account had been created in Fiscus’ name.
“And then went so far a report that suggested that I had engaged in this activity on my own is really quite reprehensible,” Fiscus said.
The memorandum criticizes TDSH for its investigation, primarily for not checking that a duplicate Amazon account had been created in Fiscus’ name. It says, “Homeland Security did not interview the owner of the unknown phone number or unknown IP address associated with the creation of the duplicate Amazon account nor did they attempt to locate and interview the owner of the IP address through which the order was placed with Amazon for the dog muzzle that was shipped to Dr. Fiscus’ work address.”
The memorandum goes on to say, “it is evident that Dr. Michelle Fiscus’ personal identifying information was compromised, exposed, and used by unknown actors”… “DA investigators found no evidence connecting Dr. Fiscus to the muzzle order.”
“It’s pretty remarkable that you can’t rely on a state agency - like the Department of Safety - to do a comprehensive investigation,” Fiscus said.
The memorandum stated it is uncertain if it was politically motivated...the events appear too coincidental to be random.”
“There will still be people who say you orchestrated this. you had somebody spoof your account. you’re behind this to this day. what do you say to them,” News 4 said.
“If they knew I had to call my 18-year-old son to help me figure out how to do the apps on my phone, they would know it’s not possible for me to spoof anything,” Fiscus said.
The Tennessee Department of Homeland Security issued this statement regarding the investigation:
“The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security has not received District Attorney General Funk’s investigative findings. It is our understanding there is a criminal investigation still on-going with the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department. Therefore, it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time.”
Fiscus was Medical Director of the Tennessee Vaccine-Preventable Diseases and Immunization Program at the Tennessee Department of Health before she was fired on July 12, 2021.
News4 Investigates has spoken with numerous other people who say clone Amazon accounts have purchased items utilizing their credit card information. You can read those stories here.
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