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Dodge County Courts outside July 2018 wiscnews web only

JUNEAU — A 46-year-old Beaver Dam woman pleaded not guilty Wednesday to a charge of public assistance fraud after law enforcement found evidence that the father of the woman’s child lived with her after she reported that he was not living with her.

Meschelle A. Dixon faces three felony charges of public assistance fraud – failure to disclose event affecting eligibility. If found guilty of all the charges, she could face up to 10½ years in prison and a $30,000 fine.

According to the criminal complaint, the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office received the welfare fraud referral for Dixon on Sept. 1 and was assigned to investigate Dixon’s household composition. Dixon had applied for benefits on April 6, 2017, but did not list who was living in her home. She reapplied for benefits on Aug. 14, 2017, and claimed that the father was living “someplace down south.”

After investigating the father’s driver’s license information and car registration, the sheriff’s office saw that the father was using the same address as Dixon. In addition, the father had voted while listing that address and had utilities set up for the home. The father also signed a form accepting custody for Dixon when she was arrested for driving under the influence.

In addition, the manager of the apartment complex allegedly said that they both lived in the same apartment and the school district confirmed the parents used the same address. The lease agreement showed that they were living in the same apartment as early as November of 2015.

Dodge County Human Services and Health Department calculated that Dixon had been overpaid about $6,800.

Dixon has a telephone scheduling conference scheduled Dec. 14.

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Follow Terri Pederson on Twitter @tlp53916 or contact her at 920-356-6760.

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