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A new low - Mother coached children to fake retardation


SevenSeasJim
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Mother coached children to fake retardation

TACOMA, Washington (AP) -- A woman admitted Monday that she coached her two children to fake retardation starting when they were 4 and 8 years old so she could collect Social Security benefits on their behalf.

Rosie Costello, 46, admitted in U.S. District Court that she collected more than $280,000 in benefits, beginning in the mid-1980s. Most was from Social Security, but the state social services agency paid $53,000.

Costello pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the government and Social Security fraud. Her son, Pete, 26, pleaded guilty earlier this month. Federal prosecutors in Seattle said Monday authorities had not yet located her daughter, Marie.

According to the plea agreement, Costello began coaching her daughter at age 4, and later used the same ruse with her son. He feigned retardation into his mid-20s -- picking at his face, slouching and appearing uncommunicative in meetings with Social Security officials.

Social Security workers became suspicious and uncovered a video of Pete Costello ably contesting a traffic ticket in a Vancouver courtroom.

Pete Costello is scheduled to be sentenced May 11 and faces from six months to a year in prison, as well as $59,000 in restitution.

Rosie Costello is scheduled for sentencing May 17. Her standard sentencing range was not immediately available, but in the plea agreement she agreed to repay the government.

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According to the plea agreement, Costello began coaching her daughter at age 4, and later used the same ruse with her son. He feigned retardation into his mid-20s -- picking at his face, slouching and appearing uncommunicative in meetings with Social Security officials.

Now THAT is carny. Well done Mr. Costello.

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Wouldn't it be a bit cruel to the special-needs children to assign a completely amoral person to work with them, though?

You're right, in that the tasks that would be assigned to her would have to be those she can do effectively, and those which would actually benefit the kids. At the very least, slinging a mop and cleaning up after the kids would be appropriate, I think.

Aloha,

Brad

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An even better sentence would be to have her (and her kids) help (again, at a reasonable hourly wage) the parents of disabled kids, with cleaning, driving, etc., to teach her how hard it really is for those parents, and what the money she stole is really intended to help with.

I'm resentful. I've acted retarded for years and nobody's ever given me any money for it.

How much in the way of door money for HM and THB shows has ended up in your pocket? (And note that going towards your bar tab counts as going into your pocket.)

Aloha,

Brad

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How much in the way of door money for HM and THB shows has ended up in your pocket? (And note that going towards your bar tab counts as going into your pocket.)

You really are a hangin' judge, aren'tcha.

I suppose we should count ourselves lucky that at least neither band has had the Good Ole' Boys end up chasing us down the road.

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you're just not doing it in front of the right people. we could join "special ed and the musically challenged" and really clean up.

Istr a show you and I played at Waterloo Park for just such a crowd some 20 years back. Maybe we missed our calling.

Irony evaporates. Those are in fact the kind of gigs that really mean something.

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Sick.

There was a case similar to this that I read about last year. Some guy (in the UK i think) who was in his 30s or 40s had been faking his own mental retardation and hired home nurses to look after him (on the state's money). He would have them change his diapers (which he didn't need to wear) and while doing so, he'd fondle their breasts!!!!!

It took years before they caught on to him.

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