The Marshall County Sheriff’s Department along with the Indiana Department of Workforce Development obtained information that inmates from various Jails and Prisons are applying for unemployment while incarcerated within the Jail. The inmates use or have people not incarcerated to complete the online application and weekly vouchers to receive the unemployment funds. After several months of investigations, the facts and information was turned over to the Marshall County Prosecutor’s Office for review. The amount of money collected from the inmates exceeded $80,000, while they had been incarcerated. The Marshall County Prosecutor’s Office filed formal charges on the following individuals for Welfare Fraud, a Level 6 Felony:

Amanda Lynn McKesson, age 40, Plymouth, arrested on December 20, 2021. Bond is $1,500.00

Ethan Wagers, age 27, Rochester, arrested on December 21, 2021, Bond is $1,500.00.

Frederick Willis, age 60, currently being held by Starke County Jail for WCC Community.

Craig Osborn, age 40, Plymouth, Indiana, was arrested on December 28, 2021.  The bond is $3,000.00.

Matthew Keller Lowry, age 33, currently within the Westville Correctional Facility.  On February 09, 2022, Mr. Matthew Lowry was found Guilty of Welfare Fraud, a Level 6 Felony.

Jeremy Spencer, age 43, Osceola, Indiana arrested on Thursday, December 23, 2021. Bond is $3,000. On February 11, 2022, Jeremy Spencer was found guilty of Welfare Fraud, a Level 6 Felony.

Jolene M. Vanlaecke, age 40, Osceola, Indiana arrested on Thursday, December 23, 2021. Bond is 3,000.

Jessalyn Bunch, age 26, Plymouth, Indiana is currently serving time at the Women’s Prison.

Marshall County Sheriff Matthew Hassel explained that this was a joint investigation with the Indiana Workforce Development and the Marshall County Sheriff’s Department. 

Readers are reminded that charging information supported by an affidavit of probable cause is merely an allegation that a crime has been committed and that there is only probable cause to believe a crime has been committed.  They are presumed innocent throughout the proceedings and are entitled to be represented by counsel and entitled to a trial by jury at which the State is obligated to provide proof beyond a reasonable doubt before a judgment of guilt may be made.