Friday, 30 April 2004 17:00

Arrest made in fraudulent windshield repair scam

Louisiana Attorney General Charles C. Foti, Jr. announced a guilty plea in an insurance scam that cost insurance companies and consumers hundreds of thousands of dollars. Foti said the case is even being watched nationally as other states may follow Louisiana's precedent of prosecuting windshield repair scams. 

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Foti, Jr.

Dock Richard Hodges, 39, Baton Rouge, pleaded guilty to 15 counts of insurance fraud and 5 counts of felony theft (over $500) for his participation in a scheme to overcharge insurance companies for windshield repair services.

Hodges owns Allstates Windshield in Baton Rouge. Glass vendors are given a 200-mile radius from their place of business in which they can perform covered work. They operate under a competitive market pricing system, which basically means that in the more populated areas, vendors are expected to give a larger discount and charge less. If the location of the service is in a rural area, the discount is smaller and the vendor can charge more for the same glass work.

Hodges set up a fictitious location under the name of Master Glass using an address in Centreville, Mississippi. The location of the business existed only on paper. The actual address belonged to a residential homeowner who had never met Dock Hodges nor heard of Master Glass.

Knowing he could recover more money claiming repair and replacement services through the bogus Mississippi location, Hodges fraudulently collected money for work actually performed through the Baton Rouge location. The state's investigation revealed that deception could have easily cost hundreds of thousands of dollars over a period of several years.

19th Judicial District Judge Bonnie Jackson ordered a pre-sentencing investigation on the case and scheduled sentencing for June 30th.