WAYNE CO. COUPLE ARRESTED FOR SELLING TENNCARE DRUGS; TWO NASHVILLE WOMEN PLEAD GUILTY TO TENNCARE FRAUD
NASHVILLE – The Office of TennCare Inspector General (OIG) today announced that two Wayne County TennCare enrollees have been arrested on charges of felony TennCare fraud, for allegedly selling prescription drugs paid for by TennCare. In addition, the OIG announced the conviction of two Nashville women on charges of TennCare fraud.
James R. Smotherman, 76, and his wife 60-year-old Alice Smotherman, both of Waynesboro are accused of selling the addictive pain medication Hydrocodone, also known as Lortab, to undercover detectives with the Waynesboro Police Department in March of this year. Alice Smotherman was arrested at home and a warrant for James Smotherman was served on him at the Giles County Jail, where he was already being held on prescription drug charges. If convicted, each of the Smothermans could both be required to serve up to two years in jail. District Attorney General T. Michael Bottoms is prosecuting.
The OIG also announced that 43-year-old Brenda Gail Mitchell pleaded guilty in Davidson Co. Criminal Court to charges of TennCare fraud, food stamp fraud, theft of property, and theft of services. Mitchell was sentenced to a total of four years supervised probation and ordered to pay TennCare more than $6,500 in restitution. In addition, she was ordered to pay more than $3,200 in restitution to the Tennessee Department for Human Services (DHS) for food stamp fraud. If Mitchell fails to make monthly payments, her probation could be revoked and she could be required to serve the four years in jail.
In an unrelated case, 60-year-old Mary Frances Denton pleaded guilty in Davidson Co. Criminal Court to charges of defrauding TennCare, selling prescription drugs and possession of prescription drugs with intent to sell. In exchange for her guilty plea, prosecutors recommended a total of three years in jail and $10,000 in fines. A sentencing hearing is scheduled for July 27th.
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.”
TennCare is the state’s managed care health insurance program
for 1.3 million people who are poor, disabled or uninsured.