Concord Woman Pleads Guilty to Making False Statements to Obtain Social Security Benefits and Food Stamps
CONCORD - Shamecca Brown, 42, of Concord, New Hampshire, pleaded guilty in federal court on Monday to making false statements to obtain Social Security benefits, United States Attorney Scott W. Murray announced today.
According to court documents and statements made in court, Brown concealed her relationship with and later marriage to her husband from the Social Security Administration (SSA) and New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (NH DHHS) to obtain Social Security benefits and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits (also known as food stamps) that she was not entitled to receive.
Brown began living with her eventual husband in 2009 and they married in December 2011. From 2009 through 2017, while he was living with and later married to Brown, Brown’s husband earned income and contributed to household expenses. Brown’s household income rendered her and her children ineligible for Social Security and SNAP benefits. Yet, from about October 1, 2009, to about October 31, 2017, in multiple applications to NH DHHS for assistance and applications for continued eligibility for SNAP benefits, Brown claimed to live alone and concealed and failed to disclose her relationship with and marriage to her husband, his presence in her household, and the income he provided to the household. In addition, in August 2012, Brown applied for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits from SSA on behalf of her minor child. In her application and in subsequent benefits reviews, Brown concealed her marriage, her living arrangement with her husband, and the income he contributed to the household.
As a result of Brown’s conduct, from 2009 until she was caught in 2017, she got $56,000 in food stamps and over $38,000 in Social Security benefits that she was not entitled to receive.
Brown is scheduled to be sentenced on September 13, 2019.
“Government programs can provide important financial support for disadvantaged individuals,” said U.S. Attorney Murray. “However, those who seek to cheat the system in order to obtain money that they are not entitled to should understand that they are committing a serious federal crime. We will strive to prevent fraudulent applications for benefits through close cooperation with our law enforcement partners.”
This matter was investigated by the Social Security Administration Office of the Inspector General and the United States Postal Inspection Service. The case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Hunter.