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FBI Raids Residence of Nursing Home CEO

USA Today

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Screen shot: USA Today


By Madeline Buckley

A cadre of agents, including personnel from the FBI, IRS and the Office of the Inspector General, raided the home of an executive of a chain of nursing homes Tuesday morning.

The home is owned by James G. Burkhart, the CEO of American Senior Communities, according to Hamilton County property records.

“The FBI is conducting an investigation into criminal activity in the Carmel area,” FBI spokeswoman Wendy Osborne told The Indianapolis Star. She declined to provided any details.

An FBI truck was parked in the front drive of the red-brick, 9,000-square-foot house in the Claybridge at Springmill subdivision of million-dollar homes. A Carmel Police Department vehicle sat in front of the home.

Investigators from multiple agencies, including the FBI, Office of the Inspector General and the Internal Revenue Service, worked inside and outside of the home, carrying papers and folders between the residence and the truck late Tuesday morning.

The subdivision is full of sprawling, stately homes, set far back from the residential streets. The neighborhood was mostly quiet Tuesday, with a few walkers and joggers occasionally passing and looking on curiously.

The Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services participated in Tuesday’s raid, but a spokeswoman said she could not provide any details about the raid or what might have been seized. The office investigates allegations or suspicions of fraud, waste and abuse in federal health care programs like Medicare and Medicaid.

The Southside Indianapolis headquarters of American Senior Communities was open Tuesday, with FBI investigators at the facility, according to WXIN-TV, Indianapolis.

A receptionist took down phone numbers, but declined to comment. No comment has come from American Senior Communities officials.

American Senior Communities has nearly 100 facilities, with many located in Central Indiana. The company’s frequent television ads salute the accomplishments of elderly nursing home residents.

Burkhart and his wife, Angela, have been contributors to Republican and Democratic candidates, according to campaign records. He is a member of the Eskenazi Health Foundation Board and a trustee at Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School.

In 2010, American Senior Communities agreed to pay $376,432 in penalties to settle a complaint that it employed seven workers who were ineligible under federal rules for reasons including the loss of licenses and a criminal conviction.

American Senior Communities operates a chain of nursing homes owned by Marion County Health and Hospital Corp.

Indiana Health Care Association, which represents nursing homes in Indiana, released a statement Tuesday, saying they were still gathering information on the raid. “Right now, our most important priority is the care of the Hoosiers in our 330 member centers across the state,” the statement read.