More than a quarter million dollars owed in restitution
Six current and one former Ohioan who owe more than $269,000 in restitution to the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) were convicted in June on charges related to workers’ compensation fraud.
Those convicted included six employers and one injured worker who was working in Colorado while collecting disability benefits from BWC. Three employers account for the bulk of the restitution owed.
“If these employers had just played by the rules and reached out to us for help when they were struggling, we could have had a better outcome for all involved,” said Jim Wernecke, director of BWC’s special investigations department. “Instead, they went in a different direction and now they have a criminal record in addition to their unpaid BWC premiums.”
In order of most recent court appearance, those convicted include:
Randall Mount, dba Ram Restoration, Lapsed Coverage, Dayton, Ohio
Mount pleaded no contest June 25 to one count of failure to comply, a second-degree misdemeanor, after BWC found him operating without coverage since January 2016. BWC worked with Mount to bring his policy current, but Mount failed to follow through.
Sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 13. The judge advised Mount that he should come to sentencing prepared to show actual steps taken toward reinstatement and compliance with the law. Mount owes more than $190,000 in premiums and claims costs billed to his policy while his coverage was lapsed.
Karrie Hoskisson, Working and Receiving, Colorado Springs, Colorado
Hoskisson, 44, formerly of Canal Winchester, pleaded guilty to a first-degree misdemeanor theft charge June 21 after BWC found her living and working in Colorado Springs, Colorado, as a night watchman while receiving BWC benefits.
The former dog groomer was sentenced to 36 days in jail. A Franklin County judge gave her credit for time served because she was jailed in Colorado after her arrest in May and again in Columbus following her extradition to Ohio.
John Triskett, dba The Gyro Spot, Under Reporting Payroll, Parma, Ohio
Triskett pleaded guilty June 19 to one count of Attempted Workers’ Compensation Fraud, a second-degree misdemeanor, after BWC found his business lacked workers’ comp coverage. A judge sentenced Triskett to 30 days in jail (suspended), six months of probation and ordered Triskett to pay a $100 fine and $1,140 in restitution to BWC.
Jason Brown, dba Bolts Carriers LLC, Lapsed Coverage, Bellefontaine, Ohio
Brown pleaded no contest June 12 in the Bellefontaine Municipal Court to two counts of failure to comply, both second-degree misdemeanors. Brown was sentenced to 20 days jail and fined $450 for each charge. The judge suspended the sentence conditionally, giving Brown until Dec. 12 to prove to the court that his BWC policy had been reinstated.
The policy for Bolts Carriers LLC had been lapsed since September 2015. Prior to sentencing, Brown paid approximately $1,900 toward his balance of more than $55,000.
Howard McIntosh, dba Custom Canvas, Lapsed Coverage, Lakeview, Ohio
McIntosh pleaded no contest June 12 in the Bellefontaine Municipal Court to three counts of failure to comply, all second-degree misdemeanors. McIntosh was sentenced to 30 days jail and fined $450 for each charge. The judge suspended the sentence conditionally, giving McIntosh until Sept. 1 to prove to the court his BWC policy had been reinstated. One week prior to his court appearance, McIntosh remitted a $1,000 payment toward his BWC balance of more than $23,000.
Stephen Frair, dba Frair Ltd, Lapsed Coverage, Columbus, Ohio
Frair pleaded guilty June 5 in Franklin County Municipal Court to two counts of failure to comply, both second-degree misdemeanors, after letting his policy lapse in July 2015. Frair told BWC he closed his business Nov. 1, 2017. A judge fined him $165.
To report suspected workers’ compensation fraud, call 1-800-644-6292 or visit bwc.ohio.gov.