by William Moultrie
Columbia – As the search for the person who fraudulently filled out a job application on behalf of Nikki Haley enters its third week, State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) officials are looking for help from the public.
“This is a very serious matter and we’re asking the public to get involved,” said Lt. Frank Horrigan of SLED. “Somewhere out there is someone capable of expertly impersonating our governor and we need to catch her before she decides to start vetoing bills or making appointments.”
The search for the mysterious “phantom” has been going on for weeks since it was revealed that someone other than then-Representative Haley incorrectly filled out a job application for a position at Lexington Medical Center. (Statewide manhunt underway for “Phantom Applicant”
The person incorrectly listed Haley’s annual income at the time as $125,000 while her tax returns show her income to be $22,000. All the other details on the form, including personal information, were apparently entered correctly.
It’s unclear what the impostor’s motives might have been since Haley subsequently was hired for the job at the exact same salary incorrectly listed on the job application. Some have speculated the goal may have been to get Haley in trouble with the IRS by making it appear that she under-reported her income by over $100,000, which would be a serious offense.
Governor Haley’s office has been silent on the manhunt up to this point, but spokesman Rob Godfrey briefly discussed the matter with the press this morning.
“We appreciate the time and energy that’s being put into this search,” said Godfrey, “but there are more pressing issues that need to be looked at and bigger crimes that need to be solved. The governor appreciates everyone’s support, but has said that she’s fine just letting this one slide. She thinks that the perpetrator has probably learned their lesson and she’s willing to just let the whole matter drop. She is declining to press any charges.”
Lt. Horrigan says that SLED has received no instruction from the governor’s office to back off the case.
“I can certainly sympathize with her not wanting to eat up valuable state resources on what seems like a victimless crime,” said Horrigan, “but identity theft is a serious offense, and now that she’s the governor, we’re sworn to protect her from incidents like this happening in the future. Also, there is a victim in this — Lexington Medical Center likely based her salary on the figure that was fraudulently entered on that application, and the more money hospitals have to spend on administrative costs, the more we all pay for health care.”
Citizens with information on this matter are urged to contact the governor and tell her that you know who really filled out the application.