A Georgia man who allegedly faked a coronavirus diagnosis to his employer, leading the business to temporarily shut down, is facing federal charges.
Santwon Antonio Davis, 34, of Morrow, about 15 miles south of Atlanta, is charged with defrauding his employer after he allegedly faked a medical excuse letter. He has since admitted to authorities that he did not have the virus, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney's Office in Atlanta.
Davis, who was employed by an unidentified Fortune 500 company, told his supervisors in March that he had tested positive for the coronavirus and emailed a letter stating that he had been admitted to the hospital and needed to quarantine for 14 days, an affidavit states.
Days prior, the company had told employees that if they have the virus they would receive paid time off while they quarantined.
"The Company’s Human Resources Manager reviewed the excuse letter and observed some indicia of fraud," according to the affidavit. "For example, the letter stated that Davis was discharged on November 10, 2019, months before the purported admission date. The letter was unsigned. The letter did not appear to be on formal letterhead."
The company called the hospital where Davis said he was treated and was told that he was not a patient there in March. Davis' employer also asked for a copy of his positive test result, but he refused to give it to them, according to the document.
Out of an abundance of caution, the company shut down for cleaning, and at least four workers had to quarantine.
The prosecutor said Davis' alleged scheme cost the company more than $100,000. He has since been fired.
“The defendant caused unnecessary economic loss to his employer and distress to his coworkers and their families,” said U.S. Attorney Byung J. Pak for the Northern District of Georgia.
Davis was released on a $15,000 bond. His attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Saturday.