Jackson, TN – Melanie Haste, 62, formerly of Trenton, Tennessee, has been sentenced to 18 months in federal prison for wire fraud. Joseph C. Murphy Jr., United States Attorney, announced the sentence today.
According to the information presented in court, from 2012 until 2020, Haste served as the Director of Risk Management at West Tennessee Healthcare and worked at the Jackson-Madison County Hospital. During her time there, she developed a fraud scheme that allowed her to steal hundreds of thousands of dollars from the organization.
In May 2020, Haste stole and attempted to deposit a check made out to the organization into her own account. The check was for more than $146,000. After bank personnel became suspicious, they froze her account and alerted West Tennessee Healthcare of her actions. After the matter was referred to law enforcement, it was discovered that beginning in 2017, Haste had stolen and attempted to steal more than $355,000 over a three-year period, using the hospital's money to pay personal expenses, finance vacations, and give to family members.
In January 2022, Haste pled guilty to one count of wire fraud.
On June 15, 2022, United States District Judge J. Daniel Breen sentenced Haste to 18 months in federal prison, followed by two years of supervised release, and a $100 special assessment. The Court also ordered Haste to pay $209,181.47 in restitution to the organization. In imposing the sentence, the Court noted that Haste had abused the trust of her employer, and the seriousness of her offense warranted a prison sentence. There is no parole in the federal system.
The case was investigated by the Jackson Police Department, Financial Crimes Unit, and the United States Secret Service.
Assistant United States Attorney Matt Wilson prosecuted the case on behalf of the government.