Politics

Rutledge’s Law Enforcement Round Up

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced recent noteworthy arrests and convictions by the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) of the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office.

“This is a warning to all Arkansans committing Medicaid fraud on some of our most vulnerable residents,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “My Medicaid Fraud unit continues to identify and prosecute fraud cases because Arkansans and taxpayers deserve better.”

Convictions

In Faulkner County, Karen Todd, 53, pleaded guilty to Class A felony Medicaid Fraud. Ms. Todd was sentenced to 36 months in the Arkansas Department of Corrections with an additional 84 months suspended imposition of sentence. She was ordered to pay $286,536.64 in restitution to the Arkansas Medicaid Program Trust Fund and $573,073.28 in fines to the general revenue of the State of Arkansas. The restitution is joint and several with Dr. Charles Todd, Jr., pursuant to a civil settlement in State v. Dr. Charles Todd, Jr., 23CV-21-1035.

In Pulaski County, Jawara Blanks, 31, pleaded guilty to probation revocation. He was sentenced to five years probation. Mr. Blanks was ordered to pay $10,485 in restitution and $32,096.00 in fines to general revenue of the State of Arkansas. This case was pertaining to secondary services billed while the primary provider had billed for services.

In Scott County, Doretha Eslick, 31, pleaded guilty to one count of Abuse of an Endangered or Impaired Person, a Class D felony and one count of Medicaid Fraud, a Class A misdemeanor. Ms. Eslick was sentenced to 60 days in county jail followed by 36 months of supervised probation and ordered to pay $540 restitution to the Medicaid Trust Fund. Ms. Eslick coerced a client, to whom she provided medical care services, to sign timesheets showing she completed the care for the client, when in fact no services were performed. The dates of the fraudulent billings were September 4, 2020 – October 1, 2020.

In Washington County, Bobby Morgan, 60, pleaded guilty to Abuse of an Endangered or Impaired Person without Injury, a Class C misdemeanor. He was sentenced to 30 days in the Washington County jail and ordered to pay a fine of $100, restitution to the victim in the amount of $1006.16, and court costs. Morgan was accused of misappropriating funds from his mother’s account while she was a patient at North Hills Health & Rehab. In August 2019, all of the money from Mr. Morgan’s mother’s Social Security checks was withdrawn or transferred to Mr. Morgan’s account.

In Pulaski County, Teashara Smith, 33, pleaded guilty to one count of Conspiracy to Distribute and Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana, Oxycodone, Ecstasy, and Alprazolam, a Class C felony. Teashara Smith was sentenced to two years of supervised release and a $100.00 fine.

Arrests

In Lawrence County, Adam Doyle, 44, was arrested July 17, 2021, on three counts of Forgery in the 2nd Degree. Doyle allegedly took and cashed several checks from a resident of the facility.

In Lawrence County, Laneshia Williams, 36, was arrested July 26, 2021, on four counts of Forgery in the 2nd Degree. Williams allegedly took and cashed several checks from a resident of the facility.

In Sharp County, Angela Costa, 38, was arrested August 19, 2021, for Medicaid Fraud, a Class B felony. Ms. Costa allegedly submitted documents to Arkansas Medicaid for payment of services she did not render.

In Mississippi County, Jeleisha Holmes, 29, was arrested August 26, 2021, and charged with Medicaid fraud, a Class C felony. Ms. Holmes, a former employee of Elite Senior Care, allegedly submitted documents to Arkansas Medicaid for payment of services she did not render between October 4, 2019, and December 20, 2019.

In Clark County, Ravin Caldwell, 32, was arrested in August 2021 for Medicaid Fraud, a Class A felony. Mr. Caldwell allegedly created and cloned documents for 22 Medicaid beneficiaries while employed at Arkansas Counseling and Psychodiagnostics (ACaP). The issue was recognized after the quarterly random 10% internal audit of client records. He created several narrative templates that were cycled through his clients’ records on a three-week basis to elude detection. ACaP also discovered that Mr. Caldwell documented/billed for services while he was in Florida on March 20, 2019. Amount in question: $73,204.96.

In Craighead County, Tina Terry, 47, was arrested October 7, 2021, for Abuse of an endangered or Impaired Person, a Class D felony. Ms. Terry is accused of abusing two different residents at the Jonesboro Human Development Center.

In Pulaski County, Teashia Landren, 33, was arrested October 13, 2021, for Medicaid Fraud, a Class A misdemeanor. Ms. Landren, a former employee of Diamond Personal Care, allegedly submitted fraudulent timesheets while the beneficiary was hospitalized.

In Clark County, Mikel Tristen Noel, 32, was arrested on October 25, 2021, and charged with Abuse of Adult and Battery 2nd Degree. He is accused of physically abusing a resident at the Arkadelphia Human Development Center.

In Craighead County, Veronica L Dillehay, 56, was arrested on October 26, 2021, and charged with Theft of Property, a Class C felony. Dillehay is alleged to have embezzled over $5,000 in nursing home resident payments from the facility, in her capacity as Business Office Manager. A resident’s daughter was notified that the resident’s bill at the facility had not been paid for several months despite having cash receipts signed by former Business Office Manager Dillehay. There is no record of the cash ever being deposited into the facility account or credit given to the resident for those months.

In Pulaski County, Keon Jenkins, 24, turned himself in to the Pulaski County court on October 28, 2021.  He is charged with Medicaid Fraud, a Class C felony. Jenkins allegedly submitted documents to Arkansas Medicaid for payment of services he did not render.

In Sebastian County, Rachel Zanelli, 39, was arrested on November 04, 2021, and charged with Abuse of an Endangered or Impaired Person, a Class A misdemeanor.  Ms. Zanelli is accused of stealing and using a recipient’s food stamp card.

In Mississippi County, Correshia Rogers, 28, was arrested on November 25, 2021, and charged with Medicaid Fraud, a Class C felony. Ms. Rogers allegedly submitted documents to Arkansas Medicaid for payment of services she did not render.

Medicaid fraud occurs when Medicaid providers use the program to obtain money for which they are not entitled. The Medicaid Fraud Control Unit also prosecutes cases of abuse, neglect and financial exploitation against Medicaid recipients.

To report suspected fraud or abuse, contact the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office at (800) 482-8982 or visit ArkansasAG.gov.

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