Wilmington woman pleads guilty in staged car crashes
WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A Wilmington woman pled guilty Tuesday to several charges after she staged at least two car crashes.
Jessica Goodman, 40, of Wilmington pled guilty in New Hanover County Superior Court to three counts of Insurance Fraud, three counts of Attempting to Obtain Property by False Pretenses and one count of Conspiracy to Obtain Property by False Pretenses.
The Honorable Judge Imelda Pate sentenced Goodman to five to nine years in prison.
The charges arose from an investigation by the North Carolina Department of Insurance into staged car crashes involving Goodman, her mother Doris Canty, her daughter Shaquetta Washington, and other close friends of the family. These specific charges related to two such staged crashes, one on October 10, 2015 and another on December 4, 2015. In both of these incidents Goodman staged car crashes and then filed claims with the other party’s insurance carrier, as well as her own insurance carrier, for alleged bodily injury and property damages resulting from these staged crashes. Goodman filed a claim with the insurance carrier for the other vehicle in the October 10 crash, alleging that she did not even know the driver and passenger of that vehicle, despite the fact that the passenger in that vehicle was her own daughter. She then withdrew that claim and refiled it with her own carrier, claiming despite proof to the contrary that it was not a staged accident.
In the December incident, Goodman claimed to be driving the car involved in the crash but that car disappeared from the scene of the accident for over 40 minutes, then returned to the scene with Goodman driving and several others including her daughter as passengers. She then claimed significantly more lost wages than was true, as well as claiming that she was injured in the accident in the exact same locations on her body as in the October accident, and that she had never previously suffered such injuries.
Canty was previously convicted by a New Hanover County jury of Insurance Fraud and Obtaining Property by False Pretenses. Washington’s cases remain pending and the other two females who were charged with Goodman, Canty and Washington both previously plead guilty to Insurance Fraud and Obtaining or Attempting to Obtain Property by False Pretenses.
The cases were prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Janet Coleman, and the defendant was represented by Andrew Nettleman of the New Hanover County Bar. The investigation was conducted by the North Carolina Department of Insurance and specifically Investigator Tyler Braswell, with assistance from the National Insurance Crime Bureau.
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