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Former Richland County JFS Employee Indicted After Improperly Securing Benefits for Boyfriend and His Child
For Immediate Release
Monday, December 19, 2022
Columbus – A Richland County Grand Jury has returned an indictment against a former public assistance specialist who allegedly used her position to improperly secure nearly $50,000 in benefits for her boyfriend and his child, Auditor of State Keith Faber announced.
Rebecca Shafer is facing seven felony counts, including theft in office, telecommunications fraud, illegal use of food stamps and Medicaid eligibility fraud, under the indictment, which was unsealed Monday in Richland County Common Pleas Court.
The Auditor of State’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) received a complaint from the administrator of Richland County Job and Family Services (JFS) concerning an employee who allegedly used her position as an Eligibility Referral Specialist to improperly secure Medicaid and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits for her boyfriend and his child.
Her actions allegedly resulted in her boyfriend and child receiving $39,670 in Medicaid benefits and $8,304 in SNAP benefits.
Shafer resigned from her position at Richland County JFS in April 2021. She was arraigned in Richland County Common Pleas Court on Monday afternoon.
Since 2019, the Special Investigations Unit has assisted in 97 convictions resulting in more than $4.9 million in restitution (see?Map of SIU Convictions?since January 2019). The team receives hundreds of tips of suspected fraud annually. Tips can be submitted anonymously online or via SIU’s fraud hotline at 866-FRAUD-OH (866-372-8364).
The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio is responsible for auditing more than 6,000 state and local government agencies. Under the direction of Auditor Keith Faber, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies, and promotes transparency in government.