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Midway law enforcement scene linked to federal insurance fraud case

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COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)

A big legislation enforcement presence in a Halfway-area neighborhood Tuesday was associated to a fraud indictment with scores of counts in opposition to greater than a dozen folks.

The indictment, filed final month and unsealed Tuesday, consists of 66 counts in opposition to a complete of 19 defendants. The indictment alleges a number of cases of insurance coverage fraud by folks dwelling within the Columbia and Kansas Metropolis areas.

Don Ledford, a spokesman with the U.S. Legal professional’s Workplace for the Western District of Missouri, stated the case is linked to a big legislation enforcement presence within the Halfway space close to Columbia on Tuesday.

The workplace stated in a information launch that the defendants acquired $1.2 million by means of the insurance coverage fraud conspiracy. The conspiracy concerned false claims of accidents suffered in automobile crashes.

Federal prosecutors allege the conspiracy began in June 2017 and continued by means of July 2020. The prosecutor’s workplace stated one man, Lawrence C. Lawhorn, 32, obtained fee in two incidents and was concerned in eight others.

5 different defendants — Lauren C. Luque, 34 of Columbia and Kansas Metropolis; Tara C. Jackson, 57, of Independence, Missouri, and Lawhorn’s mom; Michael J. Carter, 30, of Columbia; Larell M. Banks, 27, of Columbia; and Michael L. G. Stapelton, 34, of Columbia — every acquired $50,000 or extra from the scheme, prosecutors allege.

A number of native policing companies and the FBI responded to the scene in a Halfway neighborhood Tuesday morning.

The Boone County Sheriff’s Division and the ATF Job Pressure had been serving to the FBI with an investigation, sheriff’s division Sgt. Brian Leer stated. Authorities tried to cease a automobile close to the Halfway Journey Plaza in reference to that investigation, however the individual left on foot.

The Boone County Sheriff’s Division acquired a search warrant for the house the place the suspect ran.

An ABC 17 Information crew close to the intersection of Freeway 40 and Trails West Avenue stated a number of deputy automobiles had lights on and an ambulance responded to the realm.

Leer stated ATF and FBI brokers together with Columbia cops arrested an individual on the scene.

A spokesman for the FBI’s Kansas Metropolis workplace, Dixon Land, stated the federal company had brokers on the scene, however he was unable to supply any further info.

A spokesman for Missouri State Freeway Patrol Troop F, Kyle Inexperienced, stated two folks had been in the home. They got here outdoors when the police informed them to, he stated.

“They had been most likely handcuffed for precautionary causes as a result of deputies didn’t know who they had been, and I’m unaware in the event that they had been residents of the house,” Inexperienced stated.

One one who was handcuffed was seen getting right into a police automobile on the scene.

“An individual ran on foot they usually consider he fled right into a residence, the residence was surrounded however the topic was not positioned,” Inexperienced stated.

Columbia Public Faculties spokeswoman Michelle Baumstark stated there was no risk to employees at close by Halfway Heights Elementary. She stated security and safety groups had been within the constructing as effectively.

CPS college students are studying all-online till a minimum of January.

Examine again for extra info or watch ABC 17 Information at 5 and 6.

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