Where Even the Watchdogs Are Corrupt
WPRI’s been promoting its newest Target 12 investigation as “The Biggest Yet”; reporter Tim White sends along some specifics in advance of the official revelation:
CRANSTON – The Rhode Island State Police have opened a criminal investigation following a Target 12 Investigation into government waste.
The investigation, which airs tonight at 11 p.m., reveals four state workers at the Department of Labor and Training at home or on personal errands while on the clock. The investigation implicates the entire “Fraud Unit” at the DLT, a division designed to root out unemployment fraud and phony disability claims.
State police Lt. Colonel Steven O’Donnell says they were approached by state officials after Eyewitness News presented the DLT with their findings. O’Donnell says detectives are looking into possible charges of obtaining money under false pretense.
The four employees, identified by Eyewitness News as Debra Lombardi, Allyn Bosworth, David O’Brien and Claribel Terrero are suspended with pay pending the outcome of both the internal and criminal investigation, according to DLT spokesperson Laura Hart.
Their supervisor, Katherine Catanzaro has temporarily been reassigned, Hart says.
Target 12 obtained time sheets and itineraries of the fraud investigators that show they were not only on the clock when they were at home or on errands, but the itineraries reveal they claimed to be out on an investigation at the time.
On Sunday, I wondered whether it’s possible to recycle something so thoroughly rotten as the Rhode Island government. When even the people assigned to seek out fraud are behaving fraudulently, the wondering may cease; tear the whole thing down and start again.