DOI News

For Immediate Release: Contact:
June 25, 2009 Kristin Milam
Johanna Royo
Three Arrested and Accused in Owner Give-Up Scheme
RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced the arrest of Massey Ray Bowser, 25, 5802 Cobble Court Apt. B, Winston Salem, Matthew Ray Booth, 67, 509 W. First St., Weldon and Clarice Booth, 51, 509 W. First St., Weldon in what is commonly called an "owner give-up."
According to the investigation, Massey Ray Bowser filed a police report in Roanoke Rapids in February claiming that his Lincoln LS vehicle had been stolen from his home. However before the claim for more than $8,000 to Geico Insurance Company was processed, a hunter found the vehicle in Nash County, in a wooded area of some property belonging to Bowser's family. Bowser did receive $561 for a rental car. Tires, rims and a battery all worth about $1,000 were missing from the car.
As a result of the DOI investigation, Bowser is charged with one felony count of obtaining property by false pretense and one count of fraudulent disposal of security. His father, Matthew Booth, is charged with one count of felony conspiracy and one misdemeanor count of conspiracy. Bower's mother, Clarice Booth, is charged with one count of misdemeanor conspiracy. All were booked at the Halifax County Sheriff's Office. Other arrests are pending.
The Department of Insurance employs 20 sworn law enforcement officers dedicated to investigating claims of insurance fraud. In 2008, these investigators saw more than 453 cases successfully closed with more than $5.8 million in restitution and recoveries, 60 criminal convictions and 130 arrests.
An estimated 10 cents of every dollar paid in premiums goes toward the payment of fraudulent claims. To report suspected fraud, contact the Department of Insurance Investigations Division at (919) 807-6840. Callers may remain anonymous. Information is also available at the NC-DOI Web site.
-- NCDOI --