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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Wisconsin

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, January 28, 2016

Grand Jury Returns Indictments

MADISON, WIS. -- A federal grand jury in the Western District of Wisconsin, sitting in Madison, returned the following indictments yesterday.  You are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

MADISON WOMAN CHARGED WITH STEALING SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFITS

Lori Wenger, 54, Madison, Wis., is charged in a four-count indictment with stealing Social Security payments intended for the care of a minor family member and with concealing that the minor family member no longer lived with her.  The indictment alleges that from May 2011 to December 2014, Wenger stole more than $26,000 in Social Security payments.  The indictment also alleges that in February 2013 and February 2014, Wenger falsely stated on a Social Security form that the minor family member had lived with her during the preceding year and that all payments were used for the minor’s care and support. 

If convicted, Wenger faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison on the theft charge, and five years on each of the other three charges.  The charges against her are the result of an investigation by the Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General.  The prosecution of this case will be handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert A. Anderson. 

MADISON MAN CHARGED WITH GUN CRIME

Latif Williams, 34, Madison, Wis., is charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm.  The indictment alleges that on November 9, 2015, he possessed a Glock .40 caliber pistol.

If convicted, Williams faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison.  The charge against him is the result of an investigation by the Madison Police Department and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  The prosecution of this case will be handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Rita M. Rumbelow.

FEDERAL PRISON INMATE CHARGED WITH ASSAULT

Brian Gerdts, 47, an inmate of the Federal Correctional Institution at Oxford, Wis., is charged with assaulting an individual with a dangerous weapon and with intent to do bodily harm.  The indictment alleges that he committed the assault on October 26, 2015. 

If convicted, Gerdts faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison.  The charge against him is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Prisons.  The prosecution of this case will be handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Antonio M. Trillo. 

FEDERAL PRISON INMATE CHARGED WITH POSSESSING MARIJUANA

Jeffrey Larson, 62, an inmate of the Federal Correctional Institution at Oxford, Wis., is charged with possessing a prohibited object.  The indictment alleges that on February 6, 2015, he possessed marijuana.

If convicted, Larson faces a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison.  The charge against him is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Prisons.  The prosecution of this case will be handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Meredith P. Duchemin. 

Topic: 
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Updated January 28, 2016