Three Charged in Philadelphia in $300,000 Homeowners Insurance Scam
According to CBS Philadelphia, the owner of Ace Public Adjusters in Philadelphia, PA, 56-year-old Anthony J. Hoffman, and two employees, 35-year-old Deborah L. Felix and 35-year-old Hartman J. Wismer, have all been charged in connection to a homeowners insurance scam totaling more than $300,000.
It should be noted that Felix is Hoffman’s stepdaughter and was employed by Hoffman as an office manager, and Wismer is Felix’s fiancé, also employed by Hoffman as a public adjuster.
The trio has been accused of defrauding over 30 victims, many of which were elderly, by signing contracts “to represent the victims during their insurance claim process but instead of properly overseeing the process and giving homeowners what was due to them, they kept the money for themselves,” according to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner.
Krasner further stated, “They not only lied and stole from these homeowners, they took advantage of them during a period when they were confused, overwhelmed and vulnerable.”
One victim, Evon Butler of North Philadelphia, PA, had sustained roof damage to her home after a storm approximately one year prior. Ace Public Adjusters secured a $25,000 check for repairs from her insurance company. Ace cashed her check, but Butler never saw any of the money, and she now has buckets strewn across her bedroom floor to collect water from her leaking roof.
According to CBS Philadelphia, Hoffman, Felix and Wismer have all been charged with “31 counts of fraud, 25 counts of theft by deception, 31 counts forgery, conspiracy, five counts of theft by deception and four counts of issuing bad checks.”
Furthermore, Hoffman is already in federal custody in connection to federal income tax charges. Both Felix and Wismer turned themselves in last month.