Tunnel Hill Woman Charged With TennCare Fraud

Thursday, December 22, 2011
Lacey Rogers
Lacey Rogers

After being on the run for two years, a Georgia woman is in custody on TennCare fraud charges, in an indictment accusing her of claiming to live in Tennessee in order to get healthcare insurance benefits through TennCare, the state’s public insurance program.

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of 26-year old Lacey Rogers of Tunnel Hill, Ga., which is about 30 miles from the Tennessee border at Chattanooga.

She was arrested in Georgia on a fugitive warrant stemming from an indictment issued in Bradley County and charged with one count of theft of services over $1,000.

Ms. Rogers was indicted in September of 2009 in Bradley County for obtaining healthcare insurance benefits through TennCare, even though she wasn’t eligible. The indictment says that between November of 2004 and August of this year, she obtained medical services through TennCare by intentionally misrepresenting that the family resided in Tennessee when they actually lived in Georgia. The arrest was coordinated with the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office, Tunnel Hill Police Department and the Whitfield County, Georgia Sheriff’s Office.

“When people cross state lines to enroll in TennCare, they are taking services away from Tennesseans who may need health care insurance,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “If anyone hears about someone crossing state lines to enroll in TennCare, we need to know about it.”

Theft of services under $10,000 is a Class D felony that carries a maximum of four years in prison. District Attorney General R. Steven Bebb will prosecute.

The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $3.5 million paid in restitution and recoupment to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $173 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures. To date, nearly 1,500 people have been charged with TennCare fraud.

Through the OIG Cash for Tips Program established by the Legislature, Tennesseans can get cash rewards for TennCare fraud tips that lead to convictions. Anyone can report suspected TennCare fraud by calling 1-800-433-3982 toll-free from anywhere in Tennessee, or log on to www.tn.gov/tnoig and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud."


Warrants Taken For Girl, 16, After Woman Stabbed Twice During Altercation On Woodside Street

Warrants have been taken for the arrest of a 16-year-old girl after Heidi Swafford, 19, was stabbed twice in an altercation outside a house on Woodside Street on Tuesday afternoon. Warrants were issued against the juvenile for attempted second-degree murder and aggravated assault. The Chattanooga Police Department was notified by a local hospital that a female had arrived ... (click for more)

TDOT Road Worker Killed While Flagging Traffic

A Tennessee Department of Transportation worker was fatally injured Wednesday along State Route 54 near US 412 in Crockett County. James “Pee Wee” Hopkins, an operations technician, was flagging traffic around a maintenance crew when he was struck by an oncoming vehicle. No other TDOT workers were injured. The crash is under investigation. Mr. Hopkins, 63, had been with ... (click for more)

Give Bullet-Proof Vests To Every Black Youth In The City - And Response (2)

I heard a report that the Chattanooga police were being given better bullet-proof vests, and I had an idea. What if Chattanooga became known for something besides electric buses and fast internet service? What if Chattanooga provided a bullet-proof vest to every young black man and black youth in the city limits?   I can hear the scoffing as I write, but think about it. ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Our Horses Vs. DesJarlais

It is well-known that shortly after the despicable “Big Lick” faction of the Tennessee Walking Horse industry put on a very-pointed fundraiser for the equally repugnant Congressman Scott DesJarlais (R-Jasper) two years ago, the misguided doctor has repeatedly tried to bully and strong-arm the U.S. Department of Agriculture on the behalf of the vermin who sadistically torture the ... (click for more)

TSSAA Sets Future Division I, Division II Classifications

The Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association’s Board of Control has released the minutes from Wednesday’s meeting in Hermitage pertaining to football classification period for the 2017-18 and run through 2020-2021 1.  Roll Call 2.  Division I and Division II Classification The Board of Control voted the following for the classification period that ... (click for more)

Mocs Football Picked To Win Socon

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga put a league-high 10 student-athletes on the preseason All-Southern Conference Football Team, picked by the league coaches and released as part of SoCon Media Day.  The Mocs were also the top choice by the coaches and media to win the SoCon title in 2016.  Senior defensive end Keionta Davis is the coaches' selection for SoCon ... (click for more)