Physician waives hearing on charge he illegally prescribed painkiller

A longtime Titusville physician waived a preliminary hearing Tuesday on a charge that accuses him of prescribing the painkiller fentanyl to a man who wasn’t his patient.

Dr. William R. Sonnenberg, 61, appeared before district judge Amy Nicols in Titusville, and he chose to waive his hearing on a misdemeanor charge of refusal to keep required records related to the fentanyl prescription.

The charge against Sonnenberg was filed by the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, and court dockets say the incident that led to the charge occurred in January 2014.

The court dockets list the arresting officer as Craig Senz, an agent with the Office of the Attorney General’s Bureau of Narcotics Investigation and Drug Control.

Sonnenberg, 61, is a family medicine doctor with a private practice at 119 E. Mechanic St. in Titusville. He is affiliated with Titusville Area Hospital and is listed on the hospital’s website.

Leonard G. Ambrose III of the Ambrose Law Firm in Erie is listed as Sonnenberg’s attorney.

Sonnenberg was selected as president of the Pennsylvania Academy of Family Physicians in June 2012.

He was inaugurated to the position in May 2013 and served in that role until 2014.

The Pennsylvania Academy of Family Physicians is the professional association for more than 5,000 family doctors, family medicine residents and students across Pennsylvania.