TROUSDALE COUPLE ARRESTED SECOND TIME FOR TENNCARE FRAUD
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Trousdale County couple is charged with TennCare fraud for a second time this summer.
The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Jerry Whitaker, 54, and his wife Janetta Whitaker, 61, of Hartsville, Tennessee. They were indicted by the Smith County Grand Jury on Monday for defrauding the State of Tennessee of over $10,000 in TennCare benefits.
The indictment charges that from January 2001 through March of 2004,
the Whitakers committed felony theft of services and TennCare fraud
by concealing the fact that Janetta Whitaker had access to insurance
through her employer, which made them ineligible for TennCare. The
value of the TennCare benefits unlawfully obtained was more than $10,000
but less than $60,000.
“When we find individuals abusing the TennCare program in more than one county, we are working with the local district attorneys to bring charges in as many counties as necessary in order to send the message to the citizens of Tennessee that TennCare fraud will not be tolerated," Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said.
The charges against the Whitakers are felonies punishable by up to six years in prison for theft of services and four years in prison for TennCare fraud, a Class E felony. The Whitakers surrendered this afternoon at the Smith County Sheriff’s Department. Bond was set at $20,000 each. District Attorney Tommy Thompson is prosecuting both the Smith and Trousdale County matters.
Anyone can report suspected TennCare fraud by calling 1-800-433-3982
toll-free from anywhere in Tennessee, or log on to www.tennessee.gov/tenncare
and follow the prompts that read “Report Fraud Now.”