Pennsylvania State Police have charged a Carlisle woman for bilking several tractor-trailer drivers out of money by issuing fraudulent physical exams and using someone else’s medical license.
Joann Elizabeth Wingate, 56, of Carlisle is charged with forgery, identity theft, theft by deception, performs action in furtherance of false pretense, deceptive business practices, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.
According to court documents, Wingate posted signs at the Blue Beacon Truck Wash in Middlesex Township advertising DOT physicals along with a phone number to call.
Once contacted, Wingate would drive the trucker to her office which was located inside her home along the first block of Eastwick Lane in South Middleton Township, state police said. The trucker’s would pay Wingate $65 for the exam. She would then complete a physical examination mandatory for drivers with CDL licenses, including a urine test. Wingate would then fax the completed forms to the prospective Department of Transportation office.
The investigation came to light in early June–when a trucker who saw Wingate was contacted by California DOT saying the forms they received were from 2012 and the information was wrong. The trucker subsequently contacted State Police troopers on June 5 after noticing a discrepancy with her medical certificate.
After further inspection, state police found the medical license number belonged to Dr. Barbara Wingate, a psychiatrist from the greater Philadelphia area. Investigators spoke with Dr. Barbara Wingate who told them she does not conduct physical exams and never authorized anyone to use her medical license number or name for any reason including performing physical exams for DOT.
Directly above that license number, police noted two chiropractic license numbers belonging o Joann Wingate. According to court documents, one license number was suspended and the other was inactive. Investigator contacted the Pennsylvania Department of State who told them that Joann Wingate’s chiropractic license was suspended before 2014 due to advertising violations for performing DOT physical exams in the Norristown area.
In mid-June state police found that 16 drivers had physical exams completed by Wingate using Dr. Barbara Wingate’s medical license.
Troopers executed a search warrant of Wingate’s home on June 26 and uncovered numerous medical documents and forms related to DOT physicals, a forged medical card and several signs and brochures for advertising DOT physicals and drug testing with the phone number (717) 45-TRUCK listed on them.
Also seized was a small amount of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.
Wingate was arrested June 28 and taken to Cumberland County Prison in lieu of $10,000 bail.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for July 16.
State troopers believe there may be more victims out there. Anyone with any information or who believes they may have fallen victim to this scam to please call the Carlisle Barracks at 717-254-4701.