March 23, 2016
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Leandre Garner, 30, formerly of University Place, pleaded guilty in Pierce County Superior Court to attempting to file a false insurance claim, a gross misdemeanor. Garner was sentenced to 364 days in prison, with credit for 51 days served and the rest being served while on probation for two years.
Garner was also directed to pay $700 in court costs.
Garner was charged with second-degree attempted theft and filing a false insurance claim in September 2013 after an investigation by Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU).
According to the investigation, Garner obtained insurance for his 2007 Chrysler 300 in November 2012. The next day, he filed a claim with State Farm that his car was damaged in an apartment complex parking lot. Garner included a damage repair estimate of more than $4,300. However, records indicated the car was damaged before he purchased the insurance.
Garner failed to appear in court to face the charges against him and a warrant was issued for his arrest. He was placed on Kreidler’s insurance fraud most wanted list until his February 2016 arrest in California. He was transported to Pierce County Jail to face the charges.
Kreidler’s SIU investigates insurance fraud and works with the Attorney General’s Office and local prosecutors to prosecute criminal cases. Insurance fraud costs the average family $400 to $700 per year in increased premiums. Consumers can report suspected insurance fraud on the Insurance Commissioner’s website.
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