Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
FILE - Alex Lifeson, left, and Geddy Lee of the rock band RUSH arrive for the Canadian Music Industry Awards in Toronto,in this Thursday, March 8, 2007 file photo. Rush is among the group of first-time nominees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.(AP Photo/CP, Frank Gunn, File)
Man claiming to be rock star stiffs St. George hospital
First Published Jan 22 2014 10:10 pm • Last Updated Jan 23 2014 10:15 pm

A Minnesota man accused of posing as multiple rock stars to avoid his medical bills at a St. George hospital failed to make his court date this week.

Phillip Michael Schaeffer, 54, allegedly identified himself as Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson when receiving services at Dixie Regional Medical Center in December 2011. Schaeffer ran up more than $23,000 in medical bills, but told an account manager that his "agent," Phil Michaels, would deal with the insurance, police wrote. Schaeffer, who is from Monticello, Minn., then left the hospital against doctors’ orders.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

In other visits to the hospital in November 2012 and February 2013, Schaeffer received $49,000 in medical services, claiming he was Pink Floyd guitarist and vocalist David Gilmour, police wrote. Again he told a hospital billing counselor that agent Phil Michaels would provide insurance information, and again he left the hospital against doctors’ orders, police wrote.

It is not clear from charges what Schaeffer’s ailments were or whether the hospital employees believed his claimed identities or knew of Gilmour and Lifeson.

Police began investigating in April, when the hospital reported the alleged ruse. In May, police received a newspaper article detailing Schaeffer’s arrest for impersonating David Gilmour at a Minnesota hospital. Hospital staff recognized his photograph as the man who claimed to be Gilmour and Lifeson.

Schaeffer was charged in July with two second-degree felony counts of communications fraud. His initial appearance in court was scheduled for Tuesday, but he did not make the date because he is in jail in New Mexico, court documents state. It is not clear where he is jailed or for what reason.

According to news reports in Minnesota, Schaeffer failed to pay $100,000 in medical bills at a St. Cloud hospital in April. Staff there looked up a photograph of David Gilmour online to confirm Schaeffer was giving a false name, but not before Schaeffer had signed an autograph for an employee.

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment

About Reader Comments

Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.