LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced Friday the conviction of a Pocola, Oklahoma man for Medicaid fraud.
Shawn Howard pleaded guilty in Pulaski County Circuit Court and was sentenced to five years in the Arkansas Department of Correction (ADC), with an additional 15 years suspended. He will pay $23,980 in restitution to the Arkansas Medicaid Program if and when he is paroled. His sentence will run consecutively to a separate case prosecuted in Sebastian County.
“Shawn Howard took advantage of the Medicaid system and a vulnerable Arkansan,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “The attorneys and investigators at the Attorney General’s office continue to work diligently to investigate and prosecute people like Mr. Howard. He will be required to pay the money back to the Arkansas Medicaid Program after his release.”
Howard, 46, of Pocola pleaded guilty to Medicaid fraud, a Class B felony, and Theft of Property by Deception, a Class C felony, for billing the Arkansas Medicaid Program for services not rendered from August 2014 to February 2015.
Howard is currently being held in the ADC, after pleading guilty for a murder in 2015 related to the care of a Fort Smith Medicaid recipient.
The Attorney General’s office conducted the Medicaid fraud investigation in cooperation with the Office of the 12th Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney Daniel Shue, the Office of the 6th Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney Larry Jegley and the Fort Smith Police Department.
To report Medicaid fraud or abuse or neglect in residential care facilities, complete the online form at ArkansasAG.gov, call the Attorney General’s Medicaid fraud hotline at (866) 810-0016 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.