Woman charged for defrauding health and human services

Published 10:34 am Wednesday, November 23, 2016

A 32-year-old Austin woman was charged for allegedly falsely receiving $59,230.80 in overpayments through Mower County Health and Human Services after a Facebook post outed her changed marital status.

Kristina Marie Swancutt of Austin was charged with two felony counts of wrongfully obtaining assistance earlier this week in Mower County District Court.

In August, the Mower County Sheriff’s Office received a welfare fraud referral from Health and Human Services because her status said she was unmarried and no other adults lived with her.

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While Health and Human Services forms indicated her marital status was single, she posted several marriage photographs on her Facebook page dated to June 2013, including photos of her in a wedding gown.

She’d also given birth to a child with the man believed to be her husband on Jan. 5, 2014.

When approached by detectives, Swancutt said they’d had a ceremony but were not legally married. She also told police the man in the ceremony frequently stayed at her residence but did not live there.

Health and Human Services calculated $17,573.80 in overpayment for medical assistance and $41,657 in food support overpayment from February 2012 to October 2016.