For Immediate Release: August 1, 2016

Ten Accused of Staging Accidents in Pitt County

RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced the arrests of nine Pitt County residents in connection with an alleged staged auto accident ring. Investigators allege the accused staged seven separate vehicle crashes between April 2015 and August 2015, in order to defraud approximately $25,000 from Farmers, Nationwide, GEICO, Allstate, National General, State Farm and MetLife.

Jacinda Gethers Best, 42, of 3708 Old Creek Road, Greenville, was charged with seven counts each of insurance fraud and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense, four counts of obtaining property by false pretense and three counts of attempting to obtain property by false pretense and of misdemeanor child abuse. Best is charged with misdemeanor child abuse for taking her daughter, a minor, to the hospital for medical care and testing when she had no need for medical treatment. Best was arrested on July 27 in Pitt County and placed under a $20,000 bond.

Jaquanda Bradley, 19, of 33370-4 Frontgate Drive, Greenville, was charged with two counts each of insurance fraud and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense and one count each of attempting to obtain property by false pretense and obtaining property by false pretense. Bradley was arrested on July 26 in Pitt County and placed under a $10,000 bond.

Tonya Bradley, 43, 534 Pam Drive, Greenville, was charged with one count each of insurance fraud, obtaining property by false pretense and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense. Bradley was arrested on July 26 in Pitt County and placed under $5,000 bond.

Carniqua Paige, 23, of 138-C Pinewood Drive, Winterville, was charged with one count each of insurance fraud, obtaining property by false pretense and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense. Paige was arrested on July 26 in Pitt County and placed under a $5,000 bond.

Connie Carmon, 38, of 1303 Dulce Drive, Greenville, was charged with one count each of insurance fraud, obtaining property by false pretense and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense. Carmon was arrested on July 27 in Pitt County and placed under a $2,500 bond.

Redmond Wilks, 39, of 1303 Dulce Drive, Greenville, was charged with one count each of insurance fraud, obtaining property by false pretense and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense. Wilks was arrested on July 27 in Pitt County and placed under a $2,500 bond.

John Earl Best, 39, of 478 Quartz Drive, Greenville, was charged with one count each of insurance fraud, obtaining property by false pretense and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense. Best was arrested on July 27 in Pitt County and placed under a $2,500 bond.

Shalonda Foreman, 31, of 478 Quartz Drive, Greenville, was charged with one count each of insurance fraud, obtaining property by false pretense and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense. Foreman was arrested on July 27 in Pitt County and placed under a $2,500 bond.

Cursha Phillips, 22, of 3370-4 Frontgate Drive, Greenville, was charged with two counts each of insurance fraud, attempting to obtain property by false pretense and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense. Phillips was arrested on July 28 in Pitt County and placed under a $2,500 bond.

Investigators seek an additional suspect in association with this case. John Overton, 41, of 3708 Old Creek Road, Greenville, is wanted for two counts of insurance fraud and conspiracy to obtain property by false pretense and one count each of obtaining property by false pretense and attempting to obtain property by false pretense.

The Department of Insurance employs 20 sworn state law enforcement officers dedicated to investigating and prosecuting claims of insurance and bail bonding fraud. Since Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin took office in 2009, criminal investigators have made more than 1,500 arrests, resulting in more than 750 criminal convictions with more than 250 cases currently pending court. These efforts have delivered more than $72.1 million in restitution and recoveries for victims.

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 Criminal Investigations Division at 919-807-6840. Callers may remain anonymous. Information is also available at www.ncdoi.com.

--NCDOI--