Some Virginia readers may recall a high profile case in 2015 in which a teenager was accused of posing as a physician. The young man was found walking through the halls of a hospital wearing a lab coat and a stethoscope. Although the incident led to national media coverage, he was not charged in that matter. The same young man was recently arrested in Virginia and is accused of various theft & property crimes, including identity theft.
Authorities allege that the 19-year-old man committed identity theft by taking actions to obtain money and credit under false pretenses. He has been charged in the matter and faces additional charges in another state. According to investigators, he provided false information to a car dealer in an attempt to purchase a vehicle. He allegedly told the dealer that an elderly woman who was with him planned to co-sign for an auto loan.
The woman, however, told police that she had no such intention. The relationship between the two is unclear, but the young man is also accused of presenting false earnings statements in his efforts to purchase the vehicle. The criminal charges that were issued in Virginia do not relate to any attempt on his part to practice medicine, but the charges in another state are based on claims that he treated an elderly woman for stomach issues.
When asked previously, the young man told authorities that he practices alternative medicine and that he has completed the steps necessary to qualify for that type of work. There is no word on whether the recent charges are related to the practice of alternative medicine or how the young man plans to respond. As with anyone facing theft & property crimes charges, he will need to carefully structure his response in order to avoid serious punitive measures if a conviction is the eventual result.
Source: palmbeachpost.com, “Teen accused of posing as doctor indicted in Virginia“, Julius Whigham II, Jan. 12, 2017