NYWFIA 2019 Conference Photos

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Photos from our 2019 Annual Training in Albany are here.

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Elmira women arrested for welfare fraud

ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – Elmira Police arrested Rebecca Apgar, 37, after she allegedly received more than $1,700 in food stamp assistance she was not entitled to.

According to police, from October 2019 to December 2019, Apgar submitted false documents to the Chemung County Department of Social Services for the purpose of establishing and maintaining her eligibility for public assistance.

Apgar has been charged with Welfare Fraud 4th Degree, Grand Larceny 4th Degree, and Offering a False Instrument for Filing 1st Degree.

Rochester woman arrested for welfare fraud in Steuben County

Tammy Zugnoni of Rochester was arrested by the Steuben County Sheriff’s Office after a welfare fraud investigation.

The Sheriff’s Office tells 18 News that Zugnoni allegedly received $1,011.80 worth of benefits from another person’s benefit card that she was not entitled to between April and June 2018.

Zugnoni has been charged with one count of Grand Larceny 4th, a class E Felony of the New York State penal law.

Zugnoni was issued an appearance ticket to appear in the Village of Bath Court at a later date.

The Steuben County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Steuben County Department of Social Services Fraud and Legal Affairs Unit, and the District Attorney’s Office.

Rensselaer County DSS Welfare Fraud

RENSSELAER COUNTY, N.Y. — An investigation by Rensselaer County Department of Social Services and other police agencies has resulted in the arrests of 13 individuals for welfare fraud, with an additional person still being sought on fraud charges, County Executive Steve McLaughlin announced.
The Rensselaer County Department of Social Services Special Investigations Unit, in cooperation with the Rensselaer County Sheriff’s Department, City of Troy Police Department Detective Bureau and the City of Rensselaer Police Department conducted a joint investigation that commenced in November 2019 and culminated in a warrant sweep on Monday, December 9, 2019.
This joint investigation resulted in a total of 14 individuals being accused of a total of 29 separate criminal charges.

All are accused of allegedly defrauding various public assistance programs administered by the Rensselaer County Department of Social Services in an amount totaling in excess of $47,000.
All of those arrested were arraigned in Troy Police Court and released pending adjournment to a later date.
“Rensselaer County is committed to working to erase fraud from our system, and to protect the resources entrusted to us by our taxpayers to provide assistance only for those entitled to help,” McLaughlin said. “We have made stopping fraud and abuse in the welfare system a priority and welcome the results of this investigation.
“We appreciate that investigators from county DSS were able to work effectively with law enforcement from throughout the county in making these arrests.”
“My department will continue to make stopping welfare fraud a priority and will work closely with county DSS and other agencies in this effort. Taxpayers cannot afford fraud and abuse, and we are doing our part to fight back,” Rensselaer County Sheriff Pat Russo said.
“As Commissioner of Rensselaer County Department of Social Services, I am fully committed to ensuring that public assistance funds and program resources are managed properly and are only utilized by those who are lawfully qualified to receive public benefits,” DSS Commissioner Theresa A. Beaudoin added.
Those arrested and their respective charges are as follows:
Heather Beeler, 49 years of age, Rensselaer NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $2502.50 in Public Assistance and SNAP benefits.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
Evony Howard, 37 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $1852.50 in Public Assistance and SNAP benefits.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
Karen Lee, 54 years of age, Rensselaer NY, , is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $1728.00 in SNAP benefits.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
Alma Joy, 42 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $2180.00 in Public Assistance and SNAP benefits.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
Jane Luther, 50 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $2116.00 in SNAP benefits.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
Rosa Molina, 55 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $1030.00 in Public Assistance and SNAP benefits.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
Amanda Johnson, 33 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $1790.00 in Public Assistance.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
Johnathan Gratto, 33 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $1027.00 in Public Assistance.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
Sandra Sawyer, 60 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $8916.00 in Public Assistance.
• Welfare fraud in the third degree, a class D felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.15
• Grand Larceny in the third degree, a class D felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.35
Tina Colarutolo, 56 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $4566.60 in Public Assistance and SNAP benefits.
• Welfare fraud in the third degree, a class D felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.15
• Grand Larceny in the third degree, a class D felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.35
Melissa Baker, 32 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $505.00 in SNAP benefits.
• Petit Larceny, a class A misdemeanor, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.25
• Welfare fraud in the fifth degree, a class A misdemeanor, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.05
Michelle Bell, 53 years of age, Troy NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $1356.00 in HEAP benefits.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
• Offering a false instrument for filing in the first degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §175.35
Danny Gilmore, 21 years of age, Albany NY, is a Daycare vendor alleged to have fraudulently obtained $8409.30 in Daycare payments.
• Welfare fraud in the third degree, a class D felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.15
• Grand Larceny in the third degree, a class D felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.35
The following individual is wanted and is currently at large:
Shamel Chambers, 37 years of age, Albany NY, is alleged to have fraudulently obtained $1898.50 in Daycare benefits.
• Welfare fraud in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §158.10
• Grand Larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, in violation of New York State Penal Law §155.30
To report fraud or abuse of public assistance programs in Rensselaer County please call the hotline 833-DSSTIPS or email DSSTIPS@rensco.com