Two people in West Virginia found guilty for stealing from elderly nursing home resident and Medicaid fraud

West Virginia Headlines

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CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey announced that investigations completed by his office’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit have successfully resulted in criminal convictions of two individuals – the first for committing Medicaid fraud and the second for stealing from an elderly nursing home resident.
The defendants – Jessica Palmer and Brittany Counts – were recently sentenced in separate courts. Palmer pleaded guilty to one count of Medicaid fraud and was sentenced to four years’ probation plus the payment of full restitution. Counts pleaded guilty to one count of financial exploitation of an elderly person and was sentenced to pay a fine, court costs and full restitution.
“Whether it’s stealing from our state’s Medicaid dollars or from the elderly, these are especially heinous crimes that only pad the pocket of thieves,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “Our office will vigorously pursue such criminals each and every time they are discovered.”
Palmer, 40, of Wayne, admitted to fraudulently submitting forged claims and was paid for non-emergency medical transportation services that she did not actually provide for two children. She falsely claimed she had transported the minors for medical treatment requiring chemotherapy, although neither child actually had cancer or received such treatment. Palmer’s false claims defrauded the state of $7,520.
The second conviction stems from an investigation which determined that during January 2020 and February 2020, while Counts was employed as a bookkeeper at a Kanawha County nursing home, she knowingly made unauthorized transactions from a resident’s bank account for her own personal gain totaling $1,238.04.
Ms. Counts, 27, of Charleston, admitted she stole those funds from the resident, an 83-year-old elderly person. The investigation identified the dates and amounts that Counts stole from the resident through online transactions using the resident’s bank account number.

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