A York County man who collected nearly $40,000 of his mother’s Social Security benefits after she died was sentenced Tuesday to serve a year and a day in federal prison.

Mark LaPierre, 55, of Lyman, was also sentenced by Judge Jon Levy in U.S. District Court in Portland to serve two years of supervised release after his prison term and pay back $38,212 in restitution.

LaPierre, who was accused of failing to report his mother’s death, had a joint bank account with his mother, Beulah Rose LaPierre, who died in November 2010 at the age of 80, according to an affidavit filed with the court by a federal agent with the U.S. Social Security Administration.

LaPierre’s mother had collected Social Security Retirement and Survivor’s insurance as an approved beneficiary after his father died. LaPierre’s mother suffered from Alzheimer’s disease and lived with him from 2006 until her death, the federal agent, Joseph DeSantis, wrote in the affidavit.

“Mark John LaPierre did not notify SSA of his mother’s death; nor did he notify SSA that benefits continued to be deposited into the joint account. Instead, Mark John LaPierre used the benefits to pay his own personal bills and expenses,” DeSantis wrote.

Federal authorities learned of LaPierre’s crime after the Social Security Administration received an anonymous tip on April 5, 2014, and began an investigation. LaPierre admitted what he had done when confronted first in a phone call from a Social Security Administration supervisor and then in writing on April 17, 2014, when DeSantis interviewed him in person, according to court records.

LaPierre pleaded guilty to a charge of Social Security fraud on April 22.

Scott Dolan can be contacted at 791-6304 or at:

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