Columbus, OH – A Cleveland-area bartender must reimburse the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) more than $25,000 after pleading guilty to a fifth-degree felony count of workers’ compensation fraud.
BWC learned in late 2016 that Euclid resident Clarice L. Ward was not attending her physical therapy appointments for her workplace injury and that the BWC-contracted company managing her care couldn’t reach her. As BWC investigated her case, the agency received an anonymous tip that Ward was working at Final Score Bar in Willowick, Ohio, while collecting BWC disability benefits.
“Ms. Ward would not cooperate with our investigators, so we interviewed her former employer and obtained evidence proving her fraudulent activity,” said Jim Wernecke, director of BWC’s special investigations department.
Ward, 40, pleaded guilty in the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas, where the judge sentenced her to six months in prison, suspended for five years of community control, and ordered her to pay BWC $26,578 in restitution.
Source: Ohio BWC SID