A Pennsylvania woman accused of purposely and repeatedly dislocated her shoulder so she could get painkillers has pleaded guilty to fraud charges.
Latrobe resident Kari Richards pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court in Pittsburgh to health care fraud and obtaining controlled substances by fraud.
Federal prosecutors alleged last June that Richards defrauded Highmark Inc.'s Community Blue health insurance plan by traveling to more than 100 hospitals in 11 states to obtain prescriptions for shoulder dislocations she was causing herself.
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Defense attorney William McCabe says his client began struggling with addiction after a 2012 shoulder surgery. He says her shoulder continued to frequently dislocate so she used that to obtain drugs, misrepresenting the cause and her history of drug use and emergency room treatments.