MILWAUKEE, Wis. (WTAQ) - A Milwaukee man has been convicted of stealing $275,000 from the Wisconsin Shares child care program for the working poor.
A jury found 38-year-old Mark Rouse guilty of two felony theft charges. He faces up to 20 years in prison when he’s sentenced on July 22nd.
Prosecutors said Rouse was reimbursed by the state to care for children who never attended his day care center – and falsified records claiming that their parents worked for another company he owns.
Officials said Rouse later created another company to launder the tax funds, after state investigators began snooping around.
The Journal Sentinel uncovered the fraud, and a state task force later investigated and had charges filed.
State Children and Families’ Secretary Eloise Anderson said Rouse was held accountable for cheating Wisconsin taxpayers. She also said $130 million has been saved in anti-fraud efforts which began after abuses of the Wisconsin Shares funding system came to light in 2009.