A former Albany-area teacher says she did not “fake” having terminal cancer in order to collect benefits.
41-year-old Candice Lambert pleaded not guilty Wednesday morning in Albany County Court, on charges that she tried to steal more than 110-thousand dollars from the New York Teachers' Retirement System.
Lambert worked in the Cohoes School District up until 2002 when she claimed she was permanently disabled. Instead, she left for a teaching job in New Hampshire.
District officials in Cohoes later learned of her alleged scam in a roundabout manner.
“We saw this very nice newspaper article about her teaching in New Hampshire, and right away we knew something was wrong, because you just can't do that under New York disability rules,” says Cohoes Central School District Superintendent, Charles Dedrick.
Lambert turned herself into Cohoes Police back in April.
She faces seven to 20 years in prison if convicted.