HARRISBURG, Pa. (WKBN/WJET) — A Lake Milton man and New Castle woman were among 25 charged in an insurance fraud sweep in western Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced the criminal charges on Friday after investigations by the Attorney General’s Insurance Fraud Section.
Tyler Collins, 25, of Lake Milton, is charged with insurance fraud and theft by deception.
According to a criminal complaint, Collins was involved in a car crash and had made an insurance policy change, adding the vehicle to his policy. He said he made the policy change prior to the accident when investigators said he actually made it after the crash.
The other driver told police that Collins gave her an expired insurance card and told her to “wait until later” to submit an insurance claim. She said Collins then left before the officer arrived, saying he didn’t have time to wait at the scene.
Police were able to track Collins down and said Collins showed an officer the insurance policy on his cell phone. Investigators said they found that his insurance wasn’t valid at the time of the crash.
Tonya Prowell, 34, of New Castle, faces the same charges.
According to a criminal complaint, Prowell was involved in a crash on June 22, but her insurance policy had lapsed for non-payment. After the crash, Prowell made the payment and reinstated her policy. She then reported that the crash happened on June 23, according to investigators.
The criminal complaint says Prowell backed into another vehicle but didn’t initially report it.
Attorney General Josh Shapiro said insurance fraud affects more than those involved.
“Any Pennsylvanian with insurance is hurt by this type of fraud – it inflates rates and causes all of us to pay more,” he said. “It’s wrong, and my Insurance Fraud Section is taking action to stop it. We will aggressively prosecute anyone who breaks the law by providing false information to an insurance company.”