Strange bit of news from NYC:
New York Daily News - Brooklyn D.A.: Man impersonates dead mother to collect $115,000 in Social Security, rent subsidies
A Brooklyn man who police said dressed in drag to impersonate his dead mother and collect $115,000 in Social Security check and rent subsidies was indicted Wednesday on 47 counts of grand larceny, forgery and conspiracy.
Thomas Prusik-Parkin's alleged accomplice, Mhilton Rimolo, was also indicted and both men face up to 25 years in prison if they're convicted.
They pleaded not guilty at their arraignment and were each ordered held on $1 million bail.
"Mark Twain said truth is stranger than fiction and this is a great example of that," Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes said. "What the investigators uncovered was shocking."
Prusik-Parkin's six-year scam came to a crashing end on Monday when the 49-year-old from Park Slope was arrested.
"He said he's not Norman Bates," Hynes said, referring to the twisted character from the movie "Psycho" who dons his dead mother's clothing.
"This guy is not stupid, this guy is very smart. His schemes were brilliant."
Prusik-Parkin's alleged scam began in 2003 when his mother, Irene Prusik, died at age 73.
Her son allegedly gave the funeral director the wrong Social Security number and date of birth for his mother so that her death would not be registered in government databases.
He began collecting $700 a month in Social Security in her name, in addition to his own disability checks, sources said.
Authorities said Prusik-Parkin also posed as his mother to file for bankruptcy so "she" would be eligible for $39,000 in city subsidies to help pay rent on a Park Slope apartment.
To help in the ruse, Prusik-Parkin enlisted Rimolo, 47, to pose as Irene's nephew, help the "ailing aunt" get around town, cash government checks and assist in property transactions, prosecutors said.
On April 29, for example, Rimolo was with "Irene" when she renewed a driver's license in Coney Island.
Banks, courts and federal and city agencies were taken in again and again - but the Brooklyn district attorney's rackets squad wasn't fooled.
When investigators showed up to interview Irene Prusik in May, they encountered an elderly "woman" in a red dress and dark sunglasses, sources said.
Awesome that the guy is named Thomas Parkin... a dead ringer for Tony Perkins, PSYCHO's Norman Bates!