The problem with dying when you're old is that afterward there's no one around to collect those Social Security and retirement checks. Such a waste! The solution to this--at least for the living relatives--is apparently to pretend that you're the relative who died and keep on collecting those checks. That, at least, is supposedly how Loewen B. Craft, a 59-year-old Ferndale woman, rolled when it came to the death of her mom.
Craft had been charged previously with donning a wig and a walker and collecting her mom Betty Becker's pension payments to the tune of $145,000. Becker died in 2007.
Now craft is facing additional charges for bilking the state's Department of Social and Health Services for $217,000 as well.
The Bellingham Heraldreports today that the theft and identity theft charges Craft had previously faced were beefed up with first-degree theft and first-degree perjury charges last week.
Craft had been arrested at a bank, dressed like her mom, last month. It was the tail end, prosecutors say, of a devious and twisted plot to get something for nothing.
As you can see, the resemblance is pretty striking (minus the bull-dyke buzz cut).
The Herald reports:
After Becker died, Craft obtained a false identity for her mother and used that to cash Becker's retirement benefit checks, which netted her $145,000, according to charging documents filed in Superior Court.
At the same time, Craft received services and benefits from the state Department of Social and Health Services and the U.S. Social Security Administration by claiming that she did not have any income.
Craft's perjury charge actually stems from something not related to the dead-mom scheme. Craft's son, Asher Becker, is a convicted child molester, and after he was released the last time, apparently he got caught hanging out with a 15-year-old girl--something he's not allowed to do and something that Craft told her son's probation officer that he didn't do, even though it is apparently clear that he did.
Anyhow, Craft has her own problems to worry about now, obviously.
Not the least of which is making her own damn money for a change.