Watertown woman pleads guilty to bank fraud | USAO-NDNY
SYRACUSE, NEW YORK – Carrie Wetherell, 44, of Watertown, New York, pleaded guilty to one count of bank fraud related to her plan to withdraw and spend Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits from a deceased relative.
The announcement was made by United States Attorney Carla B. Freedman and Sharon B. MacDermott, Special Agent for Social Security Administration, Office of the Inspector General, New York Field Office.
As part of his guilty plea, Wetherell admitted to using his deceased relative’s identity and ATM card to withdraw SSI benefits that were deposited into the relative’s bank account after his death. At the same time Wetherell withdrew those funds, she was also receiving Temporary Assistance and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits from the Jefferson County Department of Social Services. However, she failed to disclose the money she withdrew from her deceased relative’s account, knowing that such disclosure would prevent her from receiving these benefits. As part of his plea, Wetherell agreed to pay $85,980.05 in restitution to the Jefferson County Social Security Administration and Department of Social Services and accepted a forfeiture judgment in the amount of 6 $194.00.
At sentencing, currently scheduled for February 9, 2023, Wetherell faces a maximum prison term of thirty years, a fine of up to $1,000,000 and a period of supervised release of up to five years. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the law the defendant is found guilty of breaking, US sentencing guidelines, and other factors.
This matter is being investigated by the Inspector General’s Office of Social Security Administration and is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Paul J. Tuck and Assistant States Attorney States, Adrian S. LaRochelle.