Los Angeles Times
San Quentin inmate Scott Peterson, convicted of killing his wife and unborn son, received California unemployment benefits in recent months, according to a group of state and federal prosecutors who have been investigating fraud in the pandemic relief system administered by the state Employment Development Department.
So did convicted serial killer Cary Stayner, who murdered two women and two girls near Yosemite in 1999 and now is jailed, near Peterson, on death row.
Nine district attorneys across California and a federal prosecutor on Tuesday made these allegations and called for Gov. Gavin Newsom to intervene to stop such unemployment swindling in California jails and prisons.
“It is a manifest problem that cannot be ignored, and the governor needs to take steps to address it,” said McGregor Scott, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of California.
So far, investigations have uncovered more than $400,000 in state benefits paid to death row inmates, and more than $140 million to other incarcerated people in California’s 38 prisons, according to Sacramento County Dist. Atty. Anne Marie Schubert, who helped organize and lead a task force that uncovered the alleged dupery. In total, payments to those ineligible due to incarceration in prisons and jails could total nearly $1 billion, the prosecutors claim.