Beauty Contestant Busted for Alleged Workers’ Comp Fraud After YouTube Postings

A 22-year-old Riverside woman was arrested for workers’ compensation fraud after YouTube videos surfaced showing her participating in beauty pageants at the same time she claimed to be unable to work due to a foot injury.

Shawna Lynn Palmer, 22, is seen in a booking photo. (Credit: Riverside County Sheriff's Department)

Shawna Lynn Palmer, 22, is seen in a booking photo. (Credit: Riverside County Sheriff’s Department)

Shawna Lynn Palmer claimed she fractured her toe in March while working as a clerk for Stater Brothers in Riverside, according to a news release from the California Department of Insurance.

Palmer insisted she was unable to put weight on her foot or wear a shoe for any length of time, the release stated.

But two days later, Palmer was seen on a YouTube video competing in the 2014 Miss Toyota Long Beach Grand Prix pageant while wearing high heels, according to Byron Tucker, Deputy Insurance Commissioner.

“People might want to say … here’s a young lady who had beauty and … bravado in making these claims … but it really didn’t add up on the brains side of it,” Tucker said.

Palmer went back to the doctor a week after the pageant with similar complaints about pain and was given crutches, Tucker said.

Shawna Palmer is seen competing in a beauty pageant in this still image of a March 2014 video posted to YouTube.

Shawna Palmer is seen competing in a beauty pageant in this still image of a March 2014 video posted to YouTube.

But within days, video posted online showed Palmer was competing again.

“Because of the amount of exposure that she had on social media websites it wasn’t too hard to track this down,” Tucker said.

If convicted, Palmer faced up to one year in county jail, three years probation, and restitution of $24,000.

Palmer did not respond to KTLA’s request for a comment.