Keashia Latriese Davis devised a devious plan to scam welfare out of over a quarter of a million dollars from various states. She has pleaded guilty and is awaiting her sentencing in September, where she could face up to 20 years and a $250,000 fine. From April 2015 to May 2016, Davis stole a total of $262,691, but she blew it all and needed a public defender to try her case. In the end, Davis pleaded guilty hoping for a lighter sentence.
When police conducted a raid on her apartment, they were amazed by the sheer volume of material she had. They found 17 bags containing stolen identification information, including Social Security numbers. They also found a tax refund check and a check from a utility that belonged to one of her neighbors along with detailed information she kept for her scam.
She first drew suspicion when Utah noticed that 75 of their cards were being actively swiped in Arkansas. Davis used addresses to properties via Zillow and then filled out mail forwarding forms so that the checks would be forwarded to her in Arkansas. She would use some of the cards to buy food and sold the rest to pay her rent, car payment and other bills.
The resulting investigation led to Davis who had used the addresses listed on Zillow in online applications in Utah.
The cards would be intercepted at local post offices in Utah and forwarded Davis’s address in Little Rock pursuant to a standard address change form filed by Davis.
While the ingenious plan worked for a short time, Davis now faces decades in prison away from her family, her younger children face an uncertain future and government funds intended to benefit truly needy families were diverted by a criminal scheme.
When Judge Marshall pronounced sentence in September, he may express real regret that Davis didn’t use her intelligence and creativity in a more productive and honest way that would have truly benefited her family.