Woman lied about living with dead mother to collect federal money

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KELO Scales of Justice court

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO)– A former Rapid City woman admits she pretended to live with her dead mother so she could collect tens of thousands of dollars from the federal government. Pamela MacDonald-Fisher applied to get money from the Social Security Administration in 2015. She claimed she was living with her mother in California and didn’t have any property of her own. She said she only had $2,000 in a check account.

A Factual Basis Statement filed in federal court on Tuesday says not only was her mother dead, MacDonald-Fisher owned the California home where she was living and had access to “large amounts of money” that her father left her when he died.

She didn’t get caught until she moved to South Dakota, bought another home and decided to apply for food stamps, or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The claims specialist did some checking and discovered MacDonald Fisher had a lot more money than she claimed.

All together, MacDonald-Fisher received $72,652.47 that she was not entitled to receive. When asked about the allegations, she admitted knowing that she’d been overpaid. When asked about the reporting requirements, she responded, “Did I follow the rules, probably not.”

In addition to signing the Factual Basis Statement, MacDonald-Fisher has signed a plea agreement. Her next hearing hasn’t been scheduled.

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