Images via YouTube / Danny Mullen (screenshots)
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YouTuber and comedian Danny Mullen was arrested in Tennessee at a dental clinic and charged with a felony while documenting the region's decay by way of a drug crisis fueled by opioids.
Mullen and fellow comedian Leo Dottavio were reportedly pulled over after leaving the Smiles dental clinic in Church Hill, Tennessee, after Mullen allegedly identified himself as a dental hygienist.
“[Mullen] pulled a dental tool from his pocket and started examining a patient who was in the treatment area,” Sgt. Dustin Dean reported, according to the Rogersville Review. “Mullen stated he did enter the medical clinic and state he was an amateur dental hygienist, and examined a female. Mullen did state he asked the female’s permission before examining her.”
Mullen's team was in the Appalachians creating content for his YouTube channel at the time of his arrest. They had already documented the economic crisis facing workers in the region who have seen energy sector jobs become scarce in recent years, particularly for coal mining.
"We were exploring the exploitation by massive corporations in the Appalachian region, whether it be through the opioid crisis from 'Big Pharma' or even something as simple as soda companies," Mullen told TheBlaze.
'There's even a condition in the region called 'Mountain Dew Mouth,'" Mullen explained. "We were going to do a bit in a dental clinic in relation to that topic."
A report by local police confirmed that the group were "doing a story on how Coke and Pepsi are destroying teeth and causing other health issues."
Mullen's last televised brush with authority was on a more positive note, when he and Dottavio helped save a woman from a fentanyl overdose in June 2023.
Just 30 minutes into a venture in San Francisco, the comedians were asked for help by a panicked resident who was looking for Narcan to revive his girlfriend. The crew's cameraman, Nico Villacreses, helped administer CPR to the woman, who was barely breathing, while Dottavio and Mullen called first responders.
The crew explored the mostly abandoned downtown core of the California city, which was highlighted by empty office buildings and street poker games.
However, Mullen's incident in Tennessee saw him charged with impersonation of a licensed professional, which is a Class E felony that is punishable by up to two years in prison.
Mullen was released from the Hawkins County Jail on $5,000 bond.
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