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West Virginia husband and spouse jailed for elaborate plan to faux spouse’s dying to keep away from jail time

  • A pair from West Virginia have been jailed for devising an elaborate plan to faux the lady’s dying.
  • The duo concocted a plan to trick police into believing Julie Wheeler had fallen from a steep cliff.
  • They deliberate to run away collectively to stop her from going to jail for medical fraud.
  • Visit the Insider homepage for more stories.

“Virtually heavenly, West Virginia” took on new which means after a husband and spouse duo have been convicted on Monday for an elaborate rip-off to faux the lady’s dying in an try to assist her keep away from jail time.

A dramatic search and rescue operation was launched final Could when Rodney Wheeler, 48, known as 911 – frantically claiming his spouse had fallen off a cliff whereas climbing at Grandview Overlook within the New River Gorge Nationwide Park, West Virginia.

In response to Washington post, authorities went to nice lengths to find Julie Wheeler, 44, on the belief that she had certainly fallen 1,400 toes from the lookout within the New River watershed. Search and rescue groups – led by volunteers and aided by sniffer canine and helicopters – scrambled for days in a valiant effort to seek out Wheeler, scouring mile after mile alongside the New River.

Rodney Wheeler went as far as to make a heartfelt publish on Fb, writing: “The accident at Grandview yesterday concerned my spouse … they have not discovered her but however I hope she is discovered and that ‘she is ok. ”

“I am heartbroken and misplaced proper now, however I will need to have religion… please give us time to be price it and please preserve us in your ideas and prayers.”

This turned out to be a ruse concocted by the Wheelers, who have been making an attempt to assist Julie Wheeler escape by being despatched to jail for medical fraud. Police discovered her three days later, curled up in a closet on the couple’s dwelling in Beaver – a small city of lower than 2,000 folks in southern West Virginia.

In an announcement launched by the US Lawyer’s Workplace for the Southern District of West Virginia, authorities stated Julie Wheeler was charged with fraud in September 2019 and pleaded responsible. Wheeler cheated on a Veterans Affairs workplace in 2016, by inflating his work hours and embezzling roughly $ 470,000 from this system.

She was on account of be sentenced for the crime on June 17 final 12 months, which might have landed her in jail for 10 years.

It later emerged that the Wheelers meant to let Julie go to mattress after the Could 31 “crash”. They then deliberate to run away collectively to assist her keep away from an extended jail time period.

“It is laborious to cover at dwelling,” US lawyer Mike Stuart stated within the declaration. “West Virginia legislation enforcement professionals are true execs they usually have used essential sources and risked their lives making an attempt to avoid wasting or get well the accused from what has been falsely reported as horrible tragedy.”

In response to Division of Justice paperwork, Rodney Wheeler was sentenced Monday to two months in prison in a federal prison, adopted by half a 12 months in home arrest and three years of supervised launch, for conspiracy to hinder justice.

In the meantime, Julie Wheeler was condemned to 54 months in jail – 42 months for the medical fraud cost and an extra 12 months for the try to faux his dying. She was additionally ordered to pay $ 300,000 in restitution.

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