Woman who faked death at Grandview sentenced

| July 6, 2020


Julie M. Wheeler

Julie M. Wheeler, 43, of Beckley, was sentenced to 42 months in federal prison for federal health care fraud.

After serving her prison sentence, she will be placed on supervised release for three years.

She was further ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $289,055.07, an amount calculated by the Veterans Administration (VA) and approved by the court.

In imposing a sentencing enhancement for obstruction, Judge Copenhaver found that Wheeler attempted to obstruct and impede the administration of justice by staging an “elaborate hoax” to fake her own death to avoid federal sentencing.

Woman Who Faked Death After Cheating VA Out of $300,000 Now Headed to Prison

By Hope Hodge Seck

A woman who staged an “elaborate hoax” including a faked fatal fall into a gorge to avoid the consequences of VA health care fraud was caught anyway — and will serve 3 and-a-half years in federal prison, the Department of Justice announced Wednesday.

Wheeler had previously pleaded guilty on Feb. 11 to defrauding the Department of Veterans Affairs Spina Bifida Health Care Benefits Program. According to the release, she had long overbilled as a caregiver for a family member, identified as K.L.

“Wheeler did not provide K.L. the care for and during the time period described,” DOJ officials said in the release. “Wheeler submitted claims to the VA stating that she provided care for K.L. eight hours a day, seven days a week, from October 2016 to April 2018 at the full daily rate of $736 a day. Wheeler gave a statement to the VA and the FBI admitting that she greatly inflated the rate and quality of the care that she provided to K.L. This was corroborated by other witnesses who provided statements that Wheeler did not provide eight hours of daily care.”

Wheeler acknowledged as well that her conduct had deprived her family member of services, according to the release. Sadly, K.L, who really did have spina bifida, has since died, officials said.

But after pleading guilty, Wheeler sought to avoid paying for her actions in federal sentencing, officials said. On May 31, according to the release, “Wheeler and other family members staged her fall from the Grandview State Park overlook,” a popular state park in Raleigh County, West Virginia.

K. L. turns out to be Wheeler’s own sister. For the rest of this contemptible story, read here: Military.com

Category: "Teh Stoopid", Crime, Veterans' Affairs Department

Comments (11)

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  1. A Porud Infidel®™ says:

    Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. I bet she’ll have problems even getting hired to flip burgers after she gets out!

  2. 26Limabeans says:

    “Wheeler and other family members staged her fall from the Grandview State Park overlook,”

    Sounds like the entire nest fell from the tree.

  3. HMCS(FMF) ret says:

    She’ll fit right in with Butch, Shaniqua, Rosario and “Strap-on” Sally…

  4. 5th/77th FA says:

    Another example of why we can’t have nice things. Skrunt!

  5. Boiling Mad CPO says:

    $92 an hour. Is that the going rate for VA home Care? Where do I sign up? Took care of my Dad for nothing. Stupid me. BZ

    • Comm Center Rat says:

      At $92 an hour, I wonder if she was a RN? Did she have any formal medical training? $736 for 8 hours daily is a tremendous haul for providing “care” to one veteran with Spina Bifida. Most nursing homes in my area charge about $1,000 for their daily rate, but that’s 24/7 coverage.

  6. Ret_25X says:

    Stories like this have me thinking….

    We may be thinking about reforming the system from the wrong perspective.

    I believe that our darlings in DC will simply spend more and more and more and more rather than dealing with “teh stoopid” they have created.

    What if the only useful path forward is ending the VA because the corruption is the point of the system?

  7. AZRobert says:

    Don’t end the VA, just turn it around and make all politicians and GOV union members use the VA and all Veterans with a service connection will use any civilian doctor or doctors of choice.

  8. If she croaks in the “Joint”, they can just wheel er out to the morgue.

  9. Hack Stone says:

    Judging by her booking photo, she certainly looks intelligent enough to pull off a scam on the Federal Government and get away with it. Her only screw up was when she assumed the identity of Elaine Ricci.

    • Ret_25X says:

      she looks brain dead…are they sure she is actually alive and not some weird remote control toy?