Whitefish Bay couple plead guilty to public assistance fraud charges

52-year-old Todd Schaller and 52-year-old Mary Carini-Gallagher, a couple from Whitefish Bay in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin made a guilty plea to charges of public assistance fraud last Wednesday, July 13, in relation to obtaining around $115,000 in state food and health care benefits while remodeling their house on Santa Monica Boulevard and collectively earning more than six figures.

Carni-Gallagher pleaded guilty to a single felony, of collecting benefits of more than $2,500 but less than $5,000 while Schaller pleaded guilty to a single misdemeanor, for collecting less than $2,500 in state benefits in 2013 after resigning from his high-paying job with a ready-mix concrete company.

Their house had been featured in a 2012 “At Home” article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The couple, who were charged last year with multiple felonies, managed to avoid jail time due to the guilty plea; Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Jeffrey Conen said they could still serve their suspended 12-month jail sentences if they failed terms of probation.

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