DOCUMENT: Bizarre, Crime

Woman Posed As Doctor, Gave Men Physical Exams

Pennsylvanian jailed for bizarre masquerade


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Woman Is Fake Doctor

JUNE 30--A Pennsylvania woman masqueraded as a medical doctor and performed physicals on at least two male patients in her home, according to police.

Investigators allege that Joann Elizabeth Wingate, 56, marketed her services to truckers who needed to have updated physicals so as to maintain their commercial driver’s license. Wingate, pictured below, this month examined a driver from California who spotted a sign she posted at a truck wash.

Wingate, a Cumberland County resident, was arrested Saturday on felony forgery, fraud, and identity theft charges. She is being held in lieu of $10,000 bail.

State Police officials report that Wingate, who charged $65 for an exam, displayed a bogus medical certificate that contained information corresponding with the license of Dr. Barbara Wingate, a Philadelphia-area psychiatrist.

The criminal probe of Wingate began when the California trucker became suspicious about her purported medical credentials (the man had been told by California authorities that there was a problem with forms faxed to them by Wingate). The trucker told cops that “Dr. Wingate” performed a complete exam, and even had him provide her with a urine sample.

The trucker, Todd Wakefield, told cops that “Dr. Wingate” picked him up in “an old blue Ford Tempo” and drove him to her “office,” which was inside a residence. Wakefield “indicated that besides it being odd that the ‘office’ was inside of the residence, ‘Dr. Wingate’ did ‘everything that a doctor would normally do during a physical.’”

Investigators located a second trucker who was given a physical by Wingate, and they believe more victims exist. In fact, a probable cause affidavit notes that 16 drivers had physical exams conducted by “Barbara Wingate” in 2014. “Dr. Wingate advised me that she is a psychiatrist and does not do physical exams,” reported Corporal Bryan Henneman.

Court records do not offer a motive for Wingate playing doctor, the details of which were first reported by The Patriot-News.

Pennsylvania Department of State records show that Wingate has held two separate chiropractic licenses, one of which is described as “inactive” in online records. Her second license was suspended late last year, due to “advertising violations” related to her performing Pennsylvania Department of Transportation physicals in a county about 120 miles from her residence.

During a search of Wingate’s home, police seized “numerous items related to someone that conducts physical exams and also urine analysis” and “a large quantity of medical documents and forms related to DOT physicals.” Cops also found numerous “signs and brochures for advertising DOT physicals and Drug Testing with phone number (717) 45-TRUCK.”

In addition to the felony counts, Wingate is facing minor drug charges after cops found marijuana and narcotics paraphernalia in her home during the raid. Wingate is scheduled for a July 16 preliminary hearing. (3 pages)