Charleston, VA — Pamela Taylor, the 57-year old white woman who made a racist comment about former first lady Michelle Obama on Facebook two years ago, is now going to prison for embezzling more than $18,000 in FEMA disaster benefits.
Taylor, the former Clay County development director, has recently been sentenced to 10 months in federal prison and to pay $10,000 fine. After serving her sentence in jail, she also has to undergo home confinement for the first 2 months and supervised release for 3 years.
In 2016, Taylor also made national headlines after comparing then-first lady Michelle Obama to an ape. In a Facebook post after Trump’s election, she said, “It will be refreshing to have a classy, beautiful, dignified First Lady in the White House. I’m tired of seeing a Ape in heels.”
She was then suspended from her position as Clay County development director but returned to work about a month after.
In the FEMA embezzlement case, Taylor reportedly claimed her primary residence was damaged by the flooding in West Virginia that damaged other homes and buildings and killed at least 23 people in June 2016. She also said that she stayed in a rental unit after that.
However, it turned out that her home was not damaged and that she was still living there, not in any rental unit as she has initially claimed to receive more than $18,000 in FEMA disaster benefits.
“The flood was a natural disaster. Stealing from FEMA is a man-made disaster,” U.S. Attorney Mike Stuart said in a news release. “The floods of June 2016 were historic and devastating to thousands of West Virginians. Lives were lost. Too many of our brothers and sisters lost everything. FEMA dollars are critical but limited. Stealing critical FEMA dollars is a crime — literally and figuratively. Taylor’s fraud scheme diverted disaster benefits from our most desperate and vulnerable, those most in need of help.”