Laura Oglesby Missouri mom steals estranged daughter identity pleads guilty to social security fraud as woman had history of financial fraud.
A woman has pled guilty to stealing her estranged daughter’s identity after spending two years pretending to be the 22 year old as she enrolled in university and racked up over $20K in student loans.
Laura Oglesby adopted the identity of her estranged daughter Lauren Ashleigh Hays in 2016, who was 22 at the time, after applying for a Social Security Card in her name.
The 48-year-old had originally lived with her daughter in Jonesboro, Arkansas before moving by herself over two hours north to Missouri after the two lost contact.
Having located to the small town of Mountain View, the mother concocted a new life, where she pretended to be a 22-year-old student called Lauren Hays who dated men who believed her to be in her early 20’s along with getting a job at the city library.
But in reality, the new arrival was a mother in her 40s who had assumed her estranged daughter’s identity and embezzled over $25,000 and in the process ruined her daughter’s credit.
Concocted new life, even dating men who thought she was in her early 20’s
Oglesby who on Monday pleaded guilty to one count of intentionally providing false information to the Social Security Administration, now faces up to five years in prison without parole for Social Security Fraud.
‘Everyone believed it,’ Chief Jamie Perkins of the Mountain View Police Department told The New York Times. ‘She even had boyfriends that believed that she was that age: 22 years old.’
In 2016, on the day of obtaining a fraudulent Social Security card in her daughter’s name, Oglesby used the card to obtain a Missouri driver’s license, the US Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Missouri said in a statement.
A year later, Oglesby used the Security Card again to enroll at Southwest Baptist University in Missouri where she applied for and received financial aid to attend.
She received $9,400 in federal student loans, $5,920 in Pell Grants, $337 for books she got from the University bookstore, and $1,863 in finance charges.
In 2018, detectives in Mountain View received a call from authorities in Jonesboro, Ark. saying Oglesby was wanted there on financial fraud charges and was believed to be living in southern Missouri.
A records search revealed that someone had recently gotten a driver’s license and Social Security card issued in Oglesby’s daughter’s name in Missouri.
Prior history of financial fraud
Detectives looked at the photo on the driver’s license and, while it looked quite similar to Hays, it appeared to be a woman significantly older than 24, police said at the time, according to KY3-TV. The mother was soon after arrested.
After pleading guilty to the charge of Social Security Fraud, Oglesby must pay $17,521 to the university as well as restitution to her daughter Lauren for identity theft.
But there’s more.
Oglesby had been on the run from Arkansas police in another credit fraud scheme after authorities say she stole $28,000 from an auto shop where she briefly worked in 2014, where she had six credit cards fraudulently issued to her from company accounts.
She pleaded guilty to charges in that case earlier this year.