Man charged with impersonating doctor for free Nemacolin stay |

Man charged with impersonating doctor for free Nemacolin stay

A Michigan man accused of impersonating a doctor to con a posh mountain resort out of $16,146 in free lodging and amenities will spend Thanksgiving in the far less luxurious Fayette County Prison.

Jeffrey Paul Cochran, 41, of Scottville was arraigned Wednesday before North Union District Judge Wendy Dennis on charges of theft by deception and theft of services. He was jailed on $150,000 bond.

Cochran was nabbed Nov. 12 on an arrest warrant at his mother’s funeral, according to Pennsylvania State Police. Police took him into custody after he attended a 2 p.m. graveside service in Jamestown, Mich.

Police served the warrant during a traffic stop about four miles from the cemetery, said Trooper Stefani Lucas of the Uniontown state police barracks.

Cochran was wanted on arrest warrants from Pennsylvania and Nebraska for similar schemes in which police said he impersonated physicians to secure free lodging.

Cochran told the hotels that nearby hospitals would cover his bills, then fled when the ruse was revealed, according to police.

In Fayette, police said, Cochran passed himself off as a heart surgeon and golf pro during a stay May 15-28 at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Farmington.

Cochran posed as a Uniontown Hospital doctor to persuade the resort to set up a house account that another fictitious physician was to pay. He fled out a back door when employees caught on to the ploy, leaving an unpaid $16,146 bill, police said.

Months earlier, Cochran was accused of pretending to be a physician to secure free lodging at the Candlewood Suites in Lincoln, Neb., according to an arrest warrant.

He identified himself to staff as Dr. Jay Cochran and purported to be in town on business with St. Elizabeth Regional Medical Center in Lincoln, saying the hospital would pay his bill, the warrant says.

Cochran stayed for 47 days, checking out Feb. 12, 2013, without paying his $3,182 bill.

Liz Zemba is a Trib Total Media staff writer. Reach her at 412-601-2166 or [email protected].

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.