Former DC police worker sentenced for bribery, insurance coverage fraud
According to evidence gathered by the government, Coles began working as a customer service representative for the Metropolitan Police Department in 2006. She later became a personnel assistant in late 2021 and was assigned to the Patrol Services and School Safety Bureau. In 2015, Coles conspired with two people who were “runners” – people who were in the business of joining lawyers and accident victims.
These runners were able to select potential customers by collecting police reports of recent traffic accidents. Before 2015, these reports were publicly available and could be obtained from an MPD office, but the MPD issued a general order in January 2015 restricting access to the reports. To get around this, the runners paid Cole cash in exchange for submitting the traffic accident reports that she had access to thanks to her role with the MPD.
Court documents said Coles was paid about $ 400 to $ 500 a week to participate in the bribery program, while another runner paid her about $ 350 a week. Over the course of two years, Coles received more than $ 40,000 from at least two runners.
An MPD audit revealed that Coles had accessed traffic accident reports 3,367 times between June 1, 2017 and October 6, 2017 alone.
Coles was also charged in a separate insurance fraud system. In late June 2017, her car cost between $ 1,000 and $ 2,400 for parts and an additional $ 700 for work. At the time, she had also owed the DC Department of Motor Vehicles $ 1,505 for unpaid parking tickets and fees. To avoid these costs, she conspired with a friend of the family to “disappear” the car so she can file an insurance claim.
As part of the insurance program, Coles left her car on July 31, 2017 while her co-conspirator set it on fire. Coles took over $ 1,000 from her insurer for claims about the vehicle.
Coles will be serving her 78-day weekend jail sentence and three-year probation, according to an official release from the District of Columbia District Attorney’s Office. Coles also had to repay over $ 6,000 to an insurance carrier and forfeit a $ 40,000 judgment.