Insurance fraud investigators are adept at catching red-handed all sorts of people claiming injuries when they're perfectly healthy.
Often they'll videotape suspects up to everyday stuff like walking normally to and from their vehicles while all along claiming they're on crutches and can't report to work — and of course collecting compensation benefits.
But officials had a much easier time mounting evidence against Shawna Lynn Palmer, a 22-year-old resident of Riverside, California, who received worker's compensation after she claimed a foot injury necessitated her stopping work.
Only problem — for Palmer — is that during her period of supposed convalescence, she reportedly strutted down the catwalk at two beauty pageants.
Investigators added that Palmer was videotaped in high heels at these pageants without any apparent discomfort, reported KCAL-TV in Los Angeles.
“She certainly possessed beauty and bravado, but certainly not...brains,” Byron Tucker, the state's deputy insurance commissioner, told the station.
Palmer claimed to her employer in March she couldn't work her clerk job because of a broken toe, KTLA-TV noted, citing a news release from the California Department of Insurance.
Just days later Palmer was videotaped at the 2014 Miss Toyota Long Beach Grand Prix pageant, KTLA reported.
Then Palmer went back to the doctor a week after the pageant complaining again about pain, KTLA noted.
She insisted she couldn't place any weight on her foot and couldn't wear shoes — she said she couldn't even move it, KCAL reported.
Her doctor gave Palmer an orthopedic shoe and crutches and then ordered her to stop work and to keep her foot elevated as much as possible, KCAL added.
But Palmer competed again in a pageant — and yet another video was posted online.
This one showed Palmer in a line of fellow contestants...
...and donning high-heels:
“Because of the amount of exposure that she had on social media websites it wasn’t too hard to track this down,” Tucker told KTLA.
A too-long delay in her returning to work led officials to poke around online for more information, and Palmer was arrested Friday, KCAL said. She was charged with worker's compensation fraud, KTLA said.
“She lied to her employer, she lied to her doctor, she lied to a lot of people,” Tucker noted to the station. “She eventually got arrested and busted for this.”
Palmer faces up to one year in county jail, three years of probation, and must pay $24,000 in restitution if convicted.
She didn't respond to KTLA’s request for a comment. A KCAL reporter knocked on her door in Riverside and was told to go away.