SAN ANTONIO – A former San Antonio Fire Department captain pleaded guilty Friday to insurance fraud and forgery after falsely claiming an injury kept him from working even as he continued to work.
Eric Ruiz, 48, was given two years probation and ordered to undergo one year of psychiatric counseling, the Bexar County District Attorney’s Office announced.
Ruiz was indicted last July on seven felony charges related to around $19,000 he received in workers compensation checks.
Records show starting in 2016, Ruiz repeatedly forged an SAFD supervisor’s signature on accident insurance claims that stated he was unable to work because of an injury.
Ruiz in September 2016 received a check from a claim for $10,053.
Court records show Ruiz received a second check in September 2017 for more than $3,500 and a third check the following month for more than $5,700.
A subsequent investigation determined that Ruiz was actually working, according to his indictment.
Ruiz’s arrest was notable because San Antonio police attempting to take him into custody last summer were at first unable to get him to leave his Southeast Side home, SAPD officials said at the time.
After nearly 12 hours of watching the home, officers were able to take Ruiz into custody as he was getting into a car, officials said.
An SAFD spokesman confirmed Friday that Ruiz no longer works for the department.