Southwest Community College Head Coach/A.D. Pleads Guilty
To Theft Of Social Security Benefits
Memphis, TN – Benjamin Rhodes, 49, of Millington, pleaded guilty today to two counts related
to illegally receiving and cashing approximately $12,800 in Social Security disability payments,
announced United States Attorney Edward L. Stanton III.
Rhodes submitted guilty pleas for one count of converting to his own use SSI disability
payments made after the death of four individuals, in violation of 42 USC § 408(a)(5), and one
count of intentionally concealing the death of the beneficiaries in order to continue to receive and
spend payments made by the Social Security Administration, in violation of 42 USC §
1383(a)(4). Each charge carries a penalty of up to five years in prison, up to $250,000 in fines,
three years supervised release, and a $100 special assessment.
Rhodes began his criminal activity on or about March 1, 2007, and it continued until March 1,
2012. Utilizing a rental property, Rhodes arranged to take in disabled individuals in exchange for
his being named guardian over them. During the five years in question, he diverted payments for
at least four individuals, and continued to receive and cash SSI payments following their deaths.
He was named Athletic Director and Head Basketball Coach at Southwest Tennessee
Community College in July 2012.
This investigation was conducted by Special Agent Aaron Hunt of the Social Security
Administration-Office of Inspector General; Special Agent Roger Turner, of the Tennessee
Bureau of Investigation; and Larry Myers, Investigator, United States Attorney’s
Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Steve Parker is representing the government.