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Susette Boggs, 52 of Palmdale, was arrested for alleged workers’ compensation fraud. Boggs worked for the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation for over 10 years at the Placerita Canyon Nature Center in Newhall handling a variety of animals, including owls, skunks, reptiles and opossums. Boggs reported that she had been bitten by a tick, contracted Lyme disease and as a result filed a workers’ compensation claim with a date of injury of April 19, 2007.

Boggs claimed a multitude of symptoms prevented her from working and made her daily life miserable. According to physicians’ records, Boggs reported difficulty sitting for long periods due to pain, trouble holding items due to weakness in her hands as well as other symptoms.

The investigation into Boggs’ workers’ compensation claim revealed that she failed to be truthful and misrepresented her involvement in a band as a drummer/singer to her doctors. Video evidence showed Boggs maintaining a physically active lifestyle as a drummer/singer in a band since 2007, in direct conflict with symptoms she reported to her physicians about her physical capabilities.

The activities captured on video, and reviewed by her physicians, greatly impacted their opinion as to whether Boggs has 100 percent whole body impairment. Her physicians have since concluded that Boggs is capable of gainful employment. The reversal of the medical diagnosis impacts the workers’ compensation benefits allowed to Boggs. One hundred percent permanent disability exposure was valued at $409,552. After review of the video evidence the final permanent disability value was lowered to 39 percent permanent disability or $44,620, a difference of $364,932.

“Exaggerating symptoms and deceiving physicians in hopes of a monetary workers’ compensation windfall is not a smart retirement plan,” said Insurance Commissioner Jones. “The detectives in my department are diligent in their investigations to uncover discrepancies and bring criminals to justice. My department is sending a clear message to discourage anyone considering the same path of deception. You will be caught and you will be held accountable.”

If convicted Boggs faces a possible sentence of maximum seven years in prison and restitution of $364,932.