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Fifteen people arrested on welfare fraud charges in Fulton County

Dingman

JOHNSTOWN — The Fulton County Department of Social Services’ Investigative Unit this week announced the arrests of 15 county residents on welfare fraud charges during the past four months.

A DSS news release indicated that after ongoing investigations by the unit, 15 were charged for alleged welfare fraud totaling $9,920 in unentitled benefits. The arrests were made during the time period of July 1 through Oct. 15. All program disqualifications are for a minimum of six months, the release said.

Arrested were:

∫ Rebecca Dingman, 44, of Johnstown. She was taken into custody Monday on charges of first-degree grand larceny and petit larceny. She was charged as the result of a prior welfare fraud investigation involving alleged misuse of a benefit card and petit larceny on March 15. Dingman allegedly accessed a debit card belonging to a nursing home resident that she didn’t have authorization to use in the amount of $4,605. She was arraigned and sent to the Fulton County, Jail pending further court action.

∫ Justin Brooker, 25, of Gloversville. He was arrested Oct. 9 on charges of misuse of a benefit card and petit larceny. He allegedly allowed an unauthorized individual to access his Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP benefits, while he was incarcerated.

Brooker

∫ Aziza Chevez, 30, of Johnstown. She was arrested Sept. 25 on a charge of obtaining public assistance by fraud. She allegedly failed to report wages on her SNAP application.

∫ Gary Evans, 46, of Gloversville. He was arrested Sept. 25 on charges of misuse of a benefit card and petit larceny. He allegedly allowed an unauthorized individual to access his SNAP benefits while he was incarcerated.

∫ William Poirier, 45, of Amsterdam. He was arrested Sept. 21 on charges of misuse of a benefit card and petit larceny. He allegedly allowed an unauthorized individual to access his SNAP benefits while he was incarcerated.

∫ Mary Riznyk, 66, of Gloversville. She was arrested on Sept. 21, charged with first-degree offering a false instrument for filing, fourth-degree grand larceny, and fourth-degree welfare fraud. She allegedly failed to report all household wages on her SNAP application. She received $1,299 in SNAP benefits she was not entitled to.

∫ Brittany Greenfield, 26, of Gloversville. She was arrested on Sept. 20 on charges of first-degree offering a false instrument for filing, petit larceny, and fifth-degree welfare fraud. She allegedly failed to report all household members and wages on her Temporary Assistance application. Greenfield received $909 in Temporary Assistance benefits she wasn’t entitled to.

Evans

∫ Naomi Scott, 23, of Gloversville, She was arrested Sept. 20, charged with first-degree offering a false instrument for filing, petit larceny, and fifth-degree welfare fraud. She failed to report she was receiving SNAP benefits in another state on her SNAP application in Fulton County. She received $152 in SNAP benefits she wasn’t entitled to.

∫ Alicia Caputo, 33, of Johnstown, was arrested Aug. 31. She was charged with obtaining public assistance by fraud. She allegedly failed to report unemployment benefits on her SNAP application.

∫ Amanda Conway, 29, of Gloversville. She was arrested Aug. 13, charged with first-degree offering a false instrument for filing, fourth-degree grand larceny, and fourth-degree welfare fraud. She allegedly failed to report all household wages on her SNAP application. She received $1,526 in SNAP benefits she wasn’t entitled to.

∫ Grace Pogorzelski, 59, of Broadalbin. She was arrested on Aug. 10 on charges of first-degree offering a false instrument for filing, fourth-degree grand larceny, and fourth-degree welfare fraud. She allegedly under-reported her monthly rental income on her SNAP and HEAP applications. She received $1,604 in SNAP benefits and $1,376 in HEAP benefits she wasn’t entitled to.

∫ Kyle Preston, 32, of Broadalbin. He was arrested Aug. 7, charged with obtaining public assistance by fraud. He allegedly failed to report wages on his SNAP application.

Poirier

∫ Oscar Salinas, 42, of Gloversville, was arrested July 24. He was charged with first-degree offering a false instrument for filing. He allegedly failed to report wages on an application for Medicaid.

∫ Kimlee Zobrist, 33, of Gloversville. She was arrested July 16, charged with first-degree offering a false instrument for filing, fourth-degree grand larceny, and fourth-degree welfare fraud. She allegedly applied for public assistance benefits for a child that didn’t reside with her. Zobrist received $1,505 in public assistance benefits and $214 in SNAP benefits she wasn’t entitled to.

∫ Timothy Bovee, 32, of Gloversville. He was arrested July 6, charged with first-degree offering a false instrument for filing, petit larceny, and fifth-degree welfare fraud. He allegedly failed to report his business income from his business, BTB Maintenance. He received $891 in HEAP benefits he was not entitled to.

Suspects were issued tickets to appear in City Court.

In addition to those 15 persons, the release said the unit also disqualified an additional four people from receiving cash and/or SNAP benefits for a combined time period of 30 months of program disqualification, These disqualifications resulted in $11,436 in combined program savings.

Riznyk

There are more arrests pending by the Fulton County Welfare Fraud Task Force Team. The team consists of DSS’s Investigative Unit, Fulton County Sheriff’s Department and the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office.

To anonymously report welfare fraud, call (518) 736-5620.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at manich@leaderherald.com.

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