September 18, 2013: 29 year old Cherie Rogers has been charged with Theft by Deception, Insurance Fraud and Securing the Execution of Documents by the District Attorney’s Insurance Fraud Unit (IFU).
Detectives from the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office Insurance Fraud Unit began to investigate defendant Cherie Rogers after receiving a worker’s compensation fraud referral from the Hartford Insurance Company. Rogers received over nine thousand dollars in worker’s compensation benefits from Hartford under the pretense that she was temporarily totally disabled. However, the insurance company later discovered that Rogers was holding employment elsewhere despite submitting forms which stated she had not worked and was not employed.
On May 17, 2012, Rogers was working at Green Leaf Restaurant in the Philadelphia International Airport when a metal dicer allegedly fell on her back as she was stocking bins for the salad bar. Rogers alleged that she suffered lower back injuries as a result of this incident and subsequently retained counsel to represent her in a worker’s compensation claim. A week after the accident, Rogers sought treatment at a local pain management center and proceeded to see a chiropractor on twelve additional occasions until October 2012. Rogers’ medical records alleged that an industrial chopper fell on her back, knocking her forward and causing her to experience pain, numbness and tingling down her left leg as a result. Rogers’ chiropractor ordered an MRI and EMG test, both of which produced negative results. Her chiropractor then signed that Rogers should return to work on October 19, 2012. Rogers ignored the doctor’s directions and continued to receive worker’s compensation benefits until January of 2013.
Rogers’ medical records indicated that she held a second job at the airport where she pushed elderly and disabled people to their airplanes. This information was also available on Rogers’ Facebook page where she indicated that she is an office assistant at the Philadelphia International Airport. Rogers posted that she assists with daily operations and inbound-outbound flights. Hartford then conducted surveillance, during which investigators observed Rogers driving to the airport, parking in the employee lot, and allegedly reporting to work wearing an airport uniform. Investigators contacted Human Resources at Prime Flights, Rogers’ alleged second employer, who confirmed that they had employed Rogers from March until October of 2012. Over the course of her employment, Rogers earned over five thousand dollars, three thousand of which was earned in the period of June to October 2012, when she was receiving worker’s compensation benefits from Hartford.
IFU detectives interviewed the Hartford Claims Representative assigned to this case. The representative confirmed that Rogers began receiving temporary total disability benefits on June 25, 2012 which included money back-dated from the May 17 accident. Hartford continued issuing temporary total disability workers compensation benefits in an amount of five hundred and fifty dollars biweekly until January 9, 2013. In total, Rogers received over ninety-three hundred dollars from Hartford. As part of Rogers’ worker’s compensation claim, the claims representative issued two forms to her attorney: the Employee Report of Wages and Physical Condition (LIBC 750) and Employee Verification of Employment, Self-Employment or Change in Physical Condition (LIBC 760). Rogers signed both forms which stated that she was not currently employed or self-employed, nor had she been while receiving worker’s compensation benefits. Her signature on the forms also indicated that her physical condition caused by the injury had not changed. Finally, the form required Rogers to list all employers that she worked for since the date of injury. Rogers’ form indicated that no employer information was available. Rogers signed the LIBC 750 on August 20, 2012 and the LIBC 760 on September 14, 2012. The claims representative stressed to detectives that under temporary total disability worker’s compensation, Rogers is not eligible to receive funds if she can work.
In addition to working at Prime Flights while simultaneously receiving worker’s compensation benefits, Rogers also pursued additional training in order to receive a CDL license during this time period. Rogers’ Facebook page also indicated that she had earned a CDL license from Smith and Solomon Commercial Driver Training in 2012. Detectives checked Rogers’ BMV and discovered that she received her CDL license in September of 2012. Detectives retrieved files from Smith and Solomon which stated that Rogers graduated from the training program on June 12, 2012 and was hired by the Yellow Bird Bus Company of Philadelphia to serve as a part-time charter bus operator in October of 2012.
Cherie Rogers was arrested for Insurance Fraud, Theft by Deception and Securing Documents by Execution on September 18, 2013. She is next listed for a status hearing in Philadelphia Municipal Court on September 23, 2013.
ADA Dawn Holtz and Detective Donald Murtha are specially assigned to this case.