A Collier County doctor accused of having drugs and making bombs in his home was also connected to kids in our community.
Dr. Christy Cugini has four kids, plays in a musical band for kids and even wrote a children’s book.
His patients are shocked at what investigators found in his home. One described him as a great doctor, but since she learned what deputies say they found in his home – oxy and hydrocodone – she said she remembers him asking her to bring in old pill bottles, and she was surprised to learn of his involvement in children’s lives.
Many say Cugini was very friendly, but Tuesday, he was arrested for trafficking narcotics and creating homemade explosives. He’s a father, a doctor, and a musical character in his business called “The Bumbles,” made for children. He also wrote a children’s book about bullying called “Let’s Make a Friend.”
Cathy Harris was a patient of his for 10 years.
“He worked at developing a personal relationship with you.”
She said she has nothing negative to say about him as a doctor.
Cugini is now on leave from Millennium Physicians Group where he works as an endocrinologist.
“Looking back now, I realize there were some red flags there,” Harris said.
She said after finding out about his arrest, maybe she didn’t really know his intentions and she thought about when he asked her to bring in old medications.
“He says, well, you can just bring in your old scripts, and I’ll donate them to the neighborhood clinic, and I thought, OK, that’s good, nice gesture…”
Arrest reports state Cugini had close to 600 grams of marijuana and various pill bottles in his bedroom safe.
“He gained my trust, and I realize now I’m assuming he was hoping I would bring in narcotics,” Harris said.
Along with the drugs, detectives found two different types of homemade bombs made out of PVC pipe and firework powder, one they call a step mine and the other handheld with a fuse.
“It’s very serious charges. I don’t think it’s normal behavior for anyone,” Harris said.
WINK News reached out to Cugini’s attorney but did not hear back. In court Wednesday, his attorney argued the homemade devices weren’t large enough to be considered dangerous.
Cugini has been released from jail on bond.