VA: Emergency room clerk pleads guilty to identity theft of patient

Tim McGlone reports:

Authorities say they stopped a local identity theft ring involving an emergency room clerk who stole patient data, a civic league official who is accused of using his neighbors’ personal information and two car salesmen accused of orchestrating the scam.

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The scheme involved using personal information from unknowing individuals in order to obtain car loans from the Navy Federal Credit Union. The FBI said about $134,000 in loan checks were issued and the suspects are accused of obtained $61,000 in cash from some of the checks before they were arrested.

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Nichole Ray Easton, 23, of Virginia Beach, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court on Sept. 9 to one count of aggravated identity theft.

She worked as a registrar in the Bon Secours DePaul Medical Center’s emergency room and admitted in court that she stole patient addresses and other personal information that was used in the scheme.

Hospital records show that she accessed patient records frequently between October 2007 and April, according to a statement of facts filed in federal court and that she signed.

On a number of occasions, however, she accessed the records without making any updates but to read information only as one would do when obtaining patient information,” the statement says.

Two patients’ identities were used to obtain two car loans – one for a $36,000 BMW and the other for a $25,000 Acura.

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Read more in the Virginian-Pilot

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