Pennsylvania Woman Sentenced for Fraud Relating to Multiple FMCSA Safety Programs
On July 18, 2018, Joann Wingate of Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, was sentenced in U.S. District Court, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, to 2 years’ probation, which includes 6 months of electronic-monitoring home detention and a $300 assessment fee. The court deferred a determination of restitution to a later date.
On November 7, 2017, Wingate pleaded guilty to wire fraud and false statement charges. The investigation disclosed that she had falsified Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)-regulated medical examiner’s certificates and drug-testing chain of custody forms; forged documents by using the identity of an unsuspecting licensed physician; falsified other documents by claiming to be a medical review officer (MRO); and continued to perform FMCSA-regulated medical exams for commercial driver’s license holders, in exchange for payment, after the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania suspended her chiropractic license in 2013.
Wingate admitted she unlawfully performed DOT-regulated medical examinations for commercial drivers; placed the name, license number, and signature of an unsuspecting licensed doctor on medical examiner’s certificates; and electronically submitted the forged certificates to State DOTs. She also admitted contracting with a trucking firm to handle its DOT drug-and-alcohol program requirements in exchange for payment, even though she was not qualified to act as an MRO. Wingate collected urine samples and completed custody of control forms, illicitly listing her name as the MRO. She then mailed the forms to a DOT-certified drug-testing laboratory. The trucking company relied on those false documents to prove compliance with FMCSA regulations.
FMCSA, Pennsylvania State Police (PSP), Cumberland County District Attorney’s Office, Pennsylvania Department of State, and Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) provided substantial assistance with this investigation.