Abitrators dictate contract terms for jail workers

After two years of negotiation and arbitration, union workers at the Lawrence County jail have a labor contract.

A scheme among three siblings to obtain state unemployment compensation for the incarcerated brother has resulted in criminal charges against all of them.

Jacob Joseph Ryhal, 35, of 148 Jane Lane; Angela Lynn Ryhal, 44, of 1140 Parkwood Court, Oak Leaf Gardens; and Isaac Abraham Ryhal, 27, of 407 Pearson St., are facing multiple felony counts in connection with the reported scheme which, according to a criminal complaint, benefited Jacob Ryhal while he was in the Lawrence County jail.

The report states that Isaac and Angela were working outside of the jail to file for and obtain the benefits for Jacob Ryhal, who was incarcerated for multiple retail theft cases. The unemployment fraud reportedly occurred between Aug. 22 and Oct. 5, 2020, when Jacob collected a total of $3,360 in unemployment compensation from the state Department of labor and Industry's reporting system.

County detectives learned details of the fraud while listening to phone monitoring tapes of calls Jacob Ryhal had with his family members from inside the jail.

The investigator concluded that Jacob conspired with his siblings to file false unemployment claims while he was in jail between Aug. 15 and Oct. 1, 2020. Criminal complaints against all three siblings indicate that Jacob Ryhal received a total of $3,360 in unemployment compensation to which he was not entitled. 

Jacob Ryhal, who had since been released from jail, was recommitted Feb. 22 on a $10,000 bond, charged with theft, one count of conspiracy to possess unlawful device,  and five felony counts of conspiracy to commit forgery. 

Isaac Ryhal is charged with four counts of conspiracy to commit forgery, one count of access device that is counterfeit, altered or incomplete, conspiracy to possess unlawful device making equipment, conspiracy to possess access device knowing it is counterfeit, conspiracy to commit theft, conspiracy for receiving stolen property and conspiracy to tamper with records. He also is in jail on a $10,000 bond.

A warrant has been issue  for the arrest of Angela Ryhal, who faces four counts of conspiracy to commit forgery, one count of conspiracy to commit counterfeit access device, conspiracy to commit unlawful device-making equipment, conspiracy to possess access device knowing it is counterfeit or altered, conspiracy to commit theft, conspiracy for receiving stolen property and tampering with records.

dwachter@ncnewsonline.com

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Debbie's been a journalist at the New Castle News since 1978, and covers county government, police and fire, New Castle schools, environment and various other realms. She also writes features, takes photos and video and copy edits.

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