New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli and Social Security Administration (SSA) Inspector General Gail S. Ennis today announced the guilty plea of Charles Alton Bump Jr. to two counts of felony theft for stealing $53,320 in payments from the New York State Common Retirement Fund and the SSA that were sent to his deceased mother, Elizabeth Dorothy Case. Bump concealed his mother’s death and continued collecting her retirement and SSA payments. He stole $28,679 from the state pension fund and $24,641 from the SSA. Bump was sentenced to eight years in prison minus time already served and three years supervised probation. He was also ordered to pay restitution.
“Mr. Bump’s conviction should serve as a warning to those who try to defraud the New York State Pension system: we will pursue those who attempt to steal from the system wherever they may live,” DiNapoli said. “My office will continue to work with law enforcement agencies across the country to protect the New York State pension. I’m grateful to the Social Security Administration Office of Inspector General for their partnership in seeing that justice was served.”
“This sentence holds Charles Bump accountable for deceiving the Social Security Administration so that he could fraudulently obtain benefits. Misusing Social Security benefits after someone dies is a federal crime—and we will continue to aggressively pursue those who conceal death information to defraud SSA,” Ennis said. “I want to thank the New York State Comptroller’s Office for its efforts in this investigation and the Somerset County State’s Attorney Office for prosecuting this case.”
Elizabeth Dorothy Case was a New York State employee and resident of Jamaica, Queens, who moved to Maryland to live with her son, Bump. In 2019, a concerned neighbor reported to the SSA that Case, who was approximately 90 years old at the time, had not been seen in over a year. After repeated attempts to contact her, the SSA requested that she appear in person in order to continue receiving her payments. When her son appeared instead, the SSA questioned him. He stated that she was out of the country on an extended tour of Europe and only reachable by e-mail. Authorities confirmed, however, that Case had no passport and had never left the country. Bump eventually admitted to officials that his mother had died and he had disposed of her body.
Following the joint investigation of the State Comptroller's Office and the SSA Office of the Inspector General, Bump, 62, was prosecuted by the State’s Attorney’s Office in Somerset County Maryland. He pled guilty in the District Court for Somerset County, Criminal.
Since taking office in 2007, DiNapoli has committed to fighting public corruption and encourages the public to help fight fraud and abuse. New Yorkers can report allegations of fraud involving taxpayer money by calling the toll-free Fraud Hotline at 1-888-672-4555, by filing a complaint online at https://www.osc.state.ny.us/investigations, or by mailing a complaint to: Office of the State Comptroller, Division of Investigations, 8th Floor, 110 State St., Albany, NY 12236.