LOS ANGELES– A Riverside woman has been convicted on federal identity theft charges for possessing the identities of more than 50 patients of a residential medical facility in Long Beach formerly known as the Hillcrest Care Center.
Bridgette Jackson, 45, was convicted by a jury yesterday afternoon in United States District Court of conspiring to possess more than 15 identities, possessing more than 15 identities, and aggravated identity theft.
Jackson's aunt, who testified against her at the trial, was an employee at the Hillcrest Care Center and had access to all of the patient files. According to the testimony at trial, Jackson approached her aunt and asked for personal identifying information of patients. Jackson's aunt copied or wrote down personal identifying information and provided it to Jackson on three separate occasions. Jackson then used that information to help others file false tax returns in the names of the patients and keep the refunds for themselves. When law enforcement executed a search warrant on Jackson's residence, officers seized approximately 56 Hillcrest medical records, along with almost 70 other identity profiles, which included names, social security numbers, and dates of birth of individuals other than Jackson. Law enforcement also seized over 50 prepaid debit cards in names of people other than Jackson.
“This identity theft scheme targeted vulnerable victims,” said United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker. “The victims included elderly patients at a convalescent home and a 28-year-old woman with a traumatic brain injury who has lived in a 24-hour nursing facility since she was 16.”
After Jackson's conviction yesterday, United States District Judge Manuel L. Real scheduled a sentencing hearing for March 7. At that time, Jackson will face a mandatory minimum sentence of two years in federal prison and a statutory maximum sentence of 17 years.
In an unrelated case, Jackson pled guilty last year to conspiring to commit credit card fraud in the United States District Court in Riverside and faces up to five years when she is sentenced in that case on March 28.
The Los Angeles case was investigated by the United States Secret Service, and the Riverside case was investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service.
USAO – California, Central Updated January 21, 2016
Central District of California DOJ / 16-007 / January 21, 2016