Welcome to the world of insurance weird, a strange place that reveals the surreal side of an $80-billion annual theft spree called insurance fraud.
The Insurance Fraud Odditorium home to the strange side of an $80-billion theft spree that’s no stranger to concerned Americans.
The Odditorium reveals the bizarre plots, screwball twists, extreme schemes and worst-laid plans of insurance thieves whose low road makes your premiums higher.
Fraud is no joke...but the joke’s on these insurance cheaters.
Some of the thieves bumble and fumble — they can’t keep their lies straight or plots thick. Others are clever but doomed; their thievery is too outlandish to get away with.
You just have to roll your eyes and say, “They did what?”
Well, here’s what...
Body of evidence unburied. The plot seems right out of a ghoul novel...but Molly and Clayton Daniels dug up the grave of an elderly woman, dressed her in Clayton’s clothing, stuffed her body in their car and pushed the vehicle off a cliff. The Leander, Tex. couple wanted to collect $110,000 in life-insurance money, hoping the insurer would believe the charred body in the burned-out car was Clayton. Soon after the seemingly fatal crash, the dearly departed Clayton mysteriously reappeared as Molly’s new live-in boyfriend, one “Jake Gregg.” Clayton had died his hair and wore a new mustache. The couple even forged fake a birth certificate, high school transcript and driver license. But DNA testing of the elderly woman’s body helped prove “Jake” was Clayton. Molly received 20 years in prison, and Clayton at least 10 years.
Cripple con wheeled out. Samuel Aaron Brabson tried to take his auto insurer for a ride — a wheelchair ride. The Richmond-area man said a car crash aggravated old neck and back injuries from an earlier accident. Brabson lied that he was a virtual cripple, largely confined to a wheelchair. It was a sad story. But far from crippled, Brabson secretly competed in grueling triathlons and took girlfriends on long mountain hikes. When a friend spotted him standing with no problem in a grocery store, Brabson quickly lied that he was his “twin.” The Virginia State Police helped land his conviction. Brabson received 20 years, with all but one year suspended.
Wrestling with crime. Claiming he slipped on a puddle of coffee on a 7-Eleven floor, professional wrestler Michael Taris tried to extort an insurance shakedown for his supposed injuries. The Leavittown, Pa. man said the fall so badly injured him that he couldn’t work, roughhouse with his son, or even mow the lawn. But get this...video surveillance caught the cripple in full wrestling glory. He was seen being thrown against the ropes, getting tossed from the ring, and leaping off ropes and slamming into big, beefy opponents. His ring antics were pure theater, just like his injury. The Pennsylvania AG landed a conviction, earning Taris three years of probation and a fine.
Teacher flunks fraud test. High school chemistry teacher Tramesha Lashon Fox fell behind on payments for her Chevy Malibu, and decided to unload the car for insurance money. So the Houston-area woman gave two failing chemistry students passing grades to “steal” the car and burn it. Fox left the car unlocked at a local mall while she and her daughter were inside watching a movie. The students found the keys in the glove compartment. They drove her Chevy to a nearby wooded area and set it afire with lighter fluid. They also broke the steering column to make the plot seem like a real theft. Fox passed the kids in chemistry, but she flunked in court: Fox received 90 days in county jail.