People are often told to “fake it until they make it.” However, for one former youth detention supervisor, faking it got him arrested.
Recently, a supervisor at the former Monmouth County Youth Detention Center in Freehold, NJ was arrested along with his partners in crime — his wife and a friend — after being suspected of exaggerating the severity of his injuries in a slip-and-fall accident in order to collect more than $80,000 in disability insurance, authorities reported.
On Monday, Ricky Marter, 51, was officially charged by a Monmouth County grand jury in what Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni feels is nothing short of a fraudulent claim.
Marter’s wife, Donna Marter, 48, as well as their friend Christine Bradach, 45, of Freehold Township, were both indicted on charges of providing false representation to government agencies in order to support Marter’s false claim, Gramiccioni said.
Ironically, Marter was working as a supervising officer at the youth detention center in January 2010 when he claimed to have slipped in a puddle of water on the floor while working, Gramiccioni said.
Marter claimed to have hit both his head and elbow while he fell, and said that the resulting injuries were severe enough to prevent him from coming to work, according to the acting prosecutor. He then applied for workers’ compensation benefits, claiming to have a permanent disability as a result of the fall. In January 2011, Marter proceeded to file for an accidental disability pension with the state. That application was denied.
The prosecutor’s office’s Financial Crimes and Public Corruption Bureau launched an official investigation after the county, suspecting Marter of exaggerating if not outright lying about his injuries, contested Marter’s workers’ compensation application.
Marter collected a total of more than $84,000 in workers’ compensation benefit payments from the county and its insurance company over a period of nearly nine months, between January and September 2011. The county stopped payments after the internal investigation was completed.
Marter, his wife, and their friend are all facing charges of conspiracy to commit insurance fraud, insurance fraud, workers’ compensation fraud and perjury. In addition, the Marters are also charged with conspiracy, theft by deception and attempted theft by deception.
If found guilty of the most serious charges, all three suspects face five to 10 years in prison.
“It is always a shame to see people take advantage of the justice system. In most cases, the truth does surface and justice does have a way of prevailing,” says Craig L. Cook, Attorney at Law.