Ronan Man Convicted of Work Comp Fraud

By Beacon Staff

RONAN – A 34-year-old Ronan man has been found guilty of collecting more than $14,000 in workers’ compensation benefits for a knee injury while continuing to work.

A Helena jury convicted Perry Joseph Penfield of two counts of felony theft last week. District Judge Kathy Seeley scheduled sentencing for April 11.

Penfield began receiving temporary total disability payments about a week after injuring his right knee in April 2008 while working for his parents’ business, Polson Paint and Glass.

Prosecutors alleged Penfield began painting homes in the summer of 2008, while still collecting disability benefits. He underwent surgery in the fall of 2008 and was released to return to work in May 2009, but he sought a second opinion.

Meanwhile, a State Fund investigator saw Penfield installing siding at a Polson business.

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