Colerain Township woman used deceased child’s identity to obtain $200,000 in government benefits

Colerain Township woman used deceased child’s identity to obtain 0,000 in government benefits

Christina Vaskovsky (posing as Lisa Beck) was photographed by the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles three times in 2010.

Christina Vaskovsky (posing as Lisa Beck) was photographed by the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles three times in 2010.

A woman who used the identity of a deceased child for a decade and a half to obtain nearly $200,000 in government benefits was sentenced Tuesday to 24 months in prison.

Prosecutors say Christina Vaskovsky, 56, initially used the child’s identity to avoid an arrest warrant issued for her in 2008. Vaskovsky, of Colerain Township, also used the child’s identity to file for bankruptcy and unsuccessfully apply for a pandemic relief loan.

In 2019, when Vaskovsky was arrested with her daughter for shoplifting in Kentucky, she used a false identity.

In handing down the prison sentence in federal court in Cincinnati, U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Hopkins called Vaskovsky’s conduct “egregious” and said she had engaged in illegal behavior for many years but “never faced any consequences because of it.”

She pleaded guilty in March to five counts of Social Security number fraud.

Vaskovsky’s criminal record dates back to the 1980s, when she was convicted of aiding and abetting theft. In 1991, she was convicted of credit card forgery and misuse for using stolen credit cards to purchase merchandise.

In 2003, she was sentenced to probation after being convicted of stealing nearly $1,700 in state welfare benefits.

According to court documents, Vaskovsky began using the child’s identity after she was charged in 2008 in Hamilton County with stealing more than $14,000 from her employer, a Lockland company that makes industrial thermometers.

When she failed to appear for her scheduled trial in December 2008, a nationwide arrest warrant was issued for her.

‘Lisa Beck’

Five days after the trial date, Vaskovsky obtained a certified copy of a birth certificate in the name of a child born the same year as her – but who died at the age of 10.

Vaskovsky later obtained an Ohio driver’s license and Social Security card under the deceased child’s name, “Lisa Beck.”

Using the child’s identity, court documents show, Vaskovsky received more than $116,000 in Medicare benefits, $43,352 in Social Security benefits, $19,570 in food stamps and $11,663 in unemployment benefits.

Vaskovsky also ran up $128,000 in debt under the child’s identity and then fraudulently repaid it by filing bankruptcy, the documents say.

“It is chilling that a child who died decades ago at the age of 10 now has a criminal record because of this defendant’s conduct,” prosecutors said in a sentencing memorandum.

Request for self-surrender

Vaskovsky’s attorney, Zenaida Lockard, asked Hopkins to allow her to surrender herself to the jail at a later date. Vaskovsky is being held at the Butler County Jail pending the resolution of her case, but if she is allowed to surrender herself, she will be electronically monitored at home until she reports to the jail. Most local federal defendants are being held in Butler County.

The reason: Vaskovsky suffers from multiple health problems but was treated under a false identity and has to visit eight to 10 doctors’ offices to obtain his medical records. Those records will help him with his treatment in prison, Lockard said.

Hopkins said he would consider the request, but asked both sides to file briefs.

Vaskovsky will receive credit for her eight months in detention. The time, she told Hopkins, was “excruciatingly painful.” She added that she had “seen things we shouldn’t have seen.”

This article was originally published in the Cincinnati Enquirer: Woman sentenced for using deceased child’s identity to obtain $200,000