August 28, 2018
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Jessica Epler, 25, was charged in Spokane Superior Court with second-degree attempted theft and filing a false insurance claim for a diamond ring. The case was investigated by Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler’s Criminal Investigations Unit (CIU).
Epler added a diamond ring to her fiance’s renter’s insurance policy in August 2016. The ring was valued at $4,000. She filed a “mysterious disappearance” claim with the insurer, Liberty Mutual, on Oct. 2, 2016. She said she put the ring in her purse while she was out with friends and her purse went missing. Epler was an employee of Liberty Mutual at the time of the claim.
Investigators found records that Epler sold the ring to a Spokane pawn shop on Sept. 26. On Oct. 13, Epler contacted Liberty Mutual and asked to withdraw the claim. Epler has since relocated to Pennsylvania and has not responded to Kreidler’s investigators.
Kreidler’s CIU investigates insurance fraud and works with the state Attorney General’s Office and local prosecutors on criminal cases. Insurance fraud costs the average family $400 to $700 per year in increased premiums. Insurance companies are required by law to report fraud to the commissioner.
Consumers can report suspected insurance fraud on the insurance commissioner’s website.