The Texas Department of Insurance reported that Dallas County Assistant District Attorney, Kyson Johnson has been on the job for only a few months, but has made the most of that time. In just the first quarter of 2005 Johnson has overseen cases resulting in two dozen indictments for insurance fraud related crimes.
In what is believed to be the first such arrangement in the country, Johnson is officially an employee of the Texas Department of Insurance, but works in the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office. A memorandum of understanding between TDI and the Dallas County DA assigns Johnson to insurance fraud cases with the full authority of the District Attorney’s Office.
Johnson said the impressive early track record is a reflection on the sheer case load. “All the cases I’ve worked on would have been prosecuted whether I was here or not, but having one person dedicated to insurance fraud helps free-up the other DAs in this office to focus on other crimes.” Johnson said clearing fraud cases serves a dual purpose, punishing the wrong doers and acting as a deterrent to those who may be considering these crimes.
“As far as I’m concerned there is no minimum amount of fraud that should draw our attention,” said Johnson. “The dollar amount is not going to be the determining factor in whether we pursue a case. If fraud is being committed and we have the evidence to support the allegations, we’ll go after them.”
TDI Associate Commissioner of the Fraud Division, Dennis Pompa, says his office is always seeking to improve efficiency in prosecuting insurance fraud cases. “The results of the MOU thus far have really exceeded everyone’s expectations,” Pompa said. “I think what makes it work is having Kyson become part of the team there in Dallas, as opposed to being an outsider looking for ways to mesh the work of the two distinct entities.”
Pompa credits the early success of the program to Johnson’s experience as a prosecuting attorney and his skills as a communicator. Before joining TDI, and the Dallas County DA’s Office, Johnson was a prosecutor in Grayson County and served in the U.S. Army. That service included a tour of duty in Iraq.
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