Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Chicago Criminal attorney says you know there's a recession when food stamps bring out fugitives

This Chicago Criminal attorney knows this country is in the middle of a historically huge economic recession.  One way that families have managed to stay afloat during these tough times is through government assistance in the form of food stamps.  If you are going to take advantage of government assistance you should expect that maybe, just maybe, those agencies would communicate with each other.  These folks had no such expectation.

 Hey, even bad guys have to eat at some point.
So local and federal authorities figured the best way to catch up with an on-the-lam suspect is through his stomach.
Combining Cook County fugitive data with federal food stamp rolls, Sheriff Tom Dart announced Monday that 168 fugitives had been caught in a public aid dragnet around the Chicago area.
"What happens all too frequently are people -- and I know this is going to shock you -- they lie to us occasionally," Dart said. "And so a lot of the addresses people give when they're arrested are not the real address where they're at."
But they will gladly give out their exact address to another government agency if it means dinner on the table -- even though it's illegal for a fugitive to collect government aid.
An Excel spreadsheet of nearly 41,000 outstanding warrants -- most for people who miss court dates for minor offenses -- was put together so that it was compatible with a U.S. Department of Agriculture database.
In all, 700 to 800 Cook County fugitives were collecting public aid, an analysis showed.
From there, the sheriff's office, the United States Department of Agriculture's Office of Inspector General and the U.S. Marshals Service's Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force tracked down 168 fugitives.
I guess taxpayers are saved money if a food stamp recipient isn’t collecting because they are in custody.  No wait, then the taxpayer is paying for the jail time right?

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