UPDATE: Wis. man gets 54 months for Social Security fraud

UPDATED Wednesday, April 16, 2014 --- 9:43 a.m.

STEVENS POINT, Wis. (AP) -- A Portage County man convicted of helping to cash the Social Security checks of his presumably dead mother-in-law has been sentenced to 54 months in prison, and now his wife might have similar charges reinstated.

A Stevens Point Journal Media report (http://spjour.nl/1hUPDme ) says 73-year-old Ronald Disher of Almond was sentenced Tuesday. His defense attorney, Gary Kryshak, declined to comment Wednesday morning.

Related charges against Disher's wife had been dropped in June after the 71-year-old was deemed mentally unfit to stand trial. But when Dolores Disher showed up at her husband's sentencing, prosecutors thought she looked alert enough to understand the charges.

Prosecutor Veronica Isherwood says she plans to file a motion to have Dolores Disher re-evaluated.

A message left Wednesday for Dolores Disher's former defense attorney wasn't immediately returned

Copyright 2014: Associated Press


UPDATED Friday, January 31, 2014 --- 7:44 p.m.

STEVENS POINT, Wis. (AP) -- A judge has declared a mistrial on the most serious charges against a Wisconsin man accused in a plot to steal his mother-in-law's Social Security checks for decades.

Seventy-two-year-old Ronald Disher of Almond was charged with three felonies -- fraud, forgery and theft-- in a scheme to cash Marie Jost's Social Security checks.

A jury Friday failed to reach a verdict on those counts following nearly nine hours of deliberations over two days.

WAOW-TV reports the jury convicted Disher of two misdemeanors -- endangering safety and disorderly conduct involving a confrontation with a Social Security investigator.

Prosecutor Veronica Isherwood says she'll seek a new trial on the felony counts.

Marie Jost was last seen in the 1980s. Prosecutors say some $170,000 worth of her Social Security checks were fraudulently cashed.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press


UPDATED Thursday, January 30, 2014 --- 8:52 a.m.

STEVENS POINT, Wis. (AP) -- An attorney for a Wisconsin man accused of helping fraudulently cash his mother-in-law's Social Security checks says his client is a grumpy old man but not guilty of criminal action.

Seventy-two-year-old Ronald Disher, of Almond, has been charged in the check-cashing scheme with his wife and brother-in-law.

Stevens Point Journal Media reports Portage County Assistant District Attorney Veronica Isherwood told jurors Wednesday that Disher drove the other two to a bank to cash his mother-in-law's checks and parked two blocks away to avoid being seen.

But Disher's attorney says his client is merely a "cranky and crotchety old man" with erratic behavior and doesn't know much about the family's finances or what happened to the checks.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press


Posted: Wednesday, January 29, 2014 --- 6:18 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A trial is scheduled to begin for a Portage County man accused of cashing the Social Security checks of his mother-in-law, who hasn't been heard from in about 30 years and is presumed dead.

The trial for 72-year-old Ronald Disher begins Wednesday. It's expected to last three days.

He, his wife and brother-in-law were accused of cashing Marie Jost's Social Security checks for years, collecting as much as $175,000. The Social Security Administration contacted Portage County authorities in 2012 after its efforts to confirm that Jost was still alive went nowhere.

Jost's son was found not guilty of similar charges last month by reason of mental defect. Charges again Disher's wife were dismissed of mental issues.

A message left with Disher's defense attorney, Gary Kryshak was not immediately returned.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press

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