Georgia official 'feigned pregnancy and wore fake bump to get paid maternity leave'

Georgia official ‘feigned pregnancy and wore fake bump to get paid maternity leave’

Georgia state official ‘wore fake pregnant belly to get paid vacation’ from her $100,000 job: Colleagues became suspicious when they saw her bump detached from her body

  • Robin Folsom, 43, said she was pregnant and allegedly wore a fake bump at work.
  • She received a seven-week vacation at the request of “father” Bran Otmembebwe.
  • Investigators say Otmembebwe does not exist, nor does her child.
  • Folsom received a salary of $100,000 a year as director of external relations.

Authorities said the former Georgia state official pretended to be pregnant to take paid maternity leave, and even faked a tummy and sent photos of her “newborn” to her colleagues.

Robin Folsom, 43, was unmasked after Occupational Rehabilitation Agency staff saw her fake pregnant belly “moving away” from her body and noticed her baby photos showed babies with “different skin tones,” investigators say.

The director of external affairs was on a $100,000 a year salary when she fabricated a fake father named Bran Otmembebwe for her audacious plan to swindle $15,000 in paid vacation, the Georgia Office of Inspector General said.

Robin Folsom pretended to be pregnant to take paid maternity leave, Georgia investigators said.

Robin Folsom pretended to be pregnant to take paid maternity leave, Georgia investigators said.

She was exposed after staff at the Vocational Rehabilitation Agency (pictured) saw her fake pregnant belly

She was exposed after staff at the Vocational Rehabilitation Agency (pictured) saw her fake pregnant belly “pull away” from her body.

Otmembebwe sent an email to Folsom’s superiors saying she was ordered by a doctor to stay at home for several weeks of bed rest after an apparent delivery in May 2021, after walking around the office with a false lump.

GVRA gave her seven weeks of paid leave.

Questions about the legality of the pregnancy arose two months before the apparent birth, when a colleague “watched Folsom’s lower abdomen ‘pull away’ from her body and believed Folsom had a fake pregnant belly.”

Folsom then tried to continue the ruse by sending pictures of the baby to her colleagues in her spare time after the “birth”, investigators say.

But they said, “The images were found to be inconsistent and showed children with different skin tones.”

A high-level employee claimed to have previously given birth in July 2020, but the IG office found no evidence that she ever had a baby in a Piedmont hospital, as she claimed (pictured)

A high-level employee claimed to have previously given birth in July 2020, but the IG office found no evidence that she ever had a baby in a Piedmont hospital, as she claimed (pictured)

The high-level employee claimed to have previously given birth in July 2020, but the IG office found no evidence that she ever had a child, and insurance records do not indicate a pregnancy or birth in a Piedmont hospital.

When questioned by investigators in October 2021, Folsom insisted that Otmembebwe was a real person and the father of her child.

She is currently indicted by a Fulton County grand jury on three counts of perjury and one count of identity fraud.

The state employee resigned during the audit.

State Inspector General Scott McAfee said, “All public officials, and especially those who interact with the media and the general public on behalf of their agency, must meet the highest standards of honesty and integrity.

“OIG will continue to hold government employees accountable if they decide to deceive their superiors and receive undeserved compensation.”

The case is being investigated by the Georgia Attorney General.

Folsom faces up to 10 years in prison for identity fraud and up to five years on each charge of perjury, as well as a fine of up to $100,000.

A court date has not yet been set.

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