Local News

Durham group accused of staging car crashes for cash

Posted May 31, 2013

— Durham police arrested five people and are seeking two more in an alleged insurance fraud scheme. According to the state Department of Insurance, the group staged three auto accidents last May, and some of them claimed to be injured and submitted claims to collect on the insurance.

Representatives of Nationwide and Progressive insurance companies became suspicious when they noticed the same people listed on three crash claims within one month. They found that group members had collected more than $14,000 in insurance for their alleged injuries.

Two people connected to the alleged scheme are still at large. Antoinette Henderson, 26, of 348 Kilarney Drive, and Lenora Jackson-Wilson, 41, of 3507 Century Oaks Drive, are each wanted on one count of obtaining property by false pretense, conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense and insurance fraud. Anyone with information about where those women might be is asked to call the North Carolina Department of Insurance Criminal Investigations Division at 919-807-6840.

Among the five arrested this week, two were already in jail on other charges. Ernest Bostic, 30, of 3439 Glasson St., and Walter Harris, Jr., 36, of 1512 Wabash St., face charges of insurance fraud and obtaining, attempting to obtain and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense. Both remain in custody.

Lachuante Rankin, 30, of 300 Macon St., was charged with one count each of obtaining property by false pretense and attempting to obtain property by false pretense, as well as two counts each of insurance fraud and misdemeanor child abuse. Rankin was being held under a $30,000 secured bond.

In addition to charges of obtaining property by false pretense and insurance fraud, Natoyia Barbee, 29, of Wyldewood Drive, and Tomika Green, 33, of 1819-D Haverford Road, face charges of misdemeanor child abuse because investigators said they had their children in the car at the time of the staged wrecks.


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  • iamd74 Jun 3, 2013

    godnessgracious, it's not a matter of following too close. They swerve into your lane very close in front of you and lock up their brakes before you can back off from them.

  • bugleyjeep83 May 31, 2013

    I work local EMS and am not surprised by this story at all. People are always looking to scheme some money. A city bus hit a pothole one day and we had 12+ people complaining of back pain, tying up multiple ambulances for a ploy to get money. Nonsense.

  • Jack Flash May 31, 2013

    "If you know of an act of fraud and do not blow the whistle, then you are just as guilty."

    No, they have to let you thumb through part of the $14K under your nose, pretending to smell it first. THEN you're just as guilty.

    "I am sick and tired of doing the right thing while everyone is scheming and deceiving..."

    Everyone. Yeah.

  • dontstopnow May 31, 2013

    I am so shocked by this story!!! Someone wanting something for nothing, go figure.

  • jdupree May 31, 2013

    Insurance companies report all injuries to the Index Bureau. When they report, if the person has prior claims, they get a report back. People have to be pretty dumb to try this, but they do. Nigeria had schools to train their people comming to the US on how to defraud banks and Insurance companies. They were loosly referred to as the Nigerian Mafia. Computers and Index Bureaus do a good job policing this type activity now.

  • 3TeensGrowinUp2Fast May 31, 2013

    Definitely remove those children - that's child abuse!

  • godnessgracious2 May 31, 2013

    This is why everyone should have a dash cam in their vehicles. It's so hard to prove it's not your fault when you rearend someone because they locked their brakes to collect money from your insurance company.

    It is your fault if you hit a car that has locked it's brakes in an insurance scheme attempt. Don't follow so close and you won't cause so many wrecks.

  • gingerlynn May 31, 2013

    take the kids away. Anybody that would put their children in harms way to commit a fraud is unfit.

  • Quagmire May 31, 2013

    The spirit of entrepreneurship is still alive.

  • ssmithsand May 31, 2013

    I pay $2600 year for 4 vehicles. I am sick and tired of doing the right thing while everyone is scheming and deceiving and will end up with a slap on the wrist if that. Last week, I was behind a guy at a stop sign. A friend passes so he puts his truck in reverse and backs right into me. Did he get a ticket for careless and reckless driving......NO......When I finally got the police report a week later, I contact his insurance company for an update. Well he never reported the accident and I have to wait another week for them to "investigate". There is a possibility that his insurance has lapsed. Well that is great. Now my insurance company may have to pick it up under the uninsured clause and I get an "incident" on my insurance record. Also found out the guy is on probation and the officer knew him. Our wonderful justice system at work!! What a joke!