Husband, Wife Sentenced for Ins. Fraud, Other Felonies

November 4, 2004

On Oct. 12, 2004, Gregory Keating, 44, of Riverside, Calif., and his wife, Elaina Keating, 36, also of Riverside, were sentenced for their Aug. 12 guilty pleas to various charges.

Gregory Keating, who pled guilty to felony driving under the influence, felony child endangerment and felony insurance fraud, was sentenced to 365 days in county jail, 36 months felony probation, a DUI program, and fined $2,500.

Elaina Keating, who pled guilty to felony insurance fraud, was sentenced to 60 days in county jail, 36 months felony probation, and fined $617.

“The moral of this story is simple: just say ‘no’ to insurance fraud,” stated California Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi. “The Keatings may have thought no one but big business would pay for their lie, but in fact all Californians with auto insurance pay through higher premiums.”

An investigation by the California Department of Insurance, Fraud Division (CDI) revealed that in 2003 the Keatings hosted a Fourth of July party at their home in Riverside. After consuming alcohol at the party, Gregory Keating drove a 17-year-old family friend to get some fast food in the Keatings’ sports utility vehicle (SUV). On the way, Gregory crashed and rolled the vehicle when he tried to enter the freeway at excessive speed. Leaving the crashed vehicle on the freeway, he returned home where he and his wife concocted a phony story that the SUV had been stolen. This alleged theft was reported to their insurance company, Hartford, and the California Highway Patrol.

A witness who saw Gregory Keating drive the vehicle on the date of the alleged theft called CDI to report the incident. This tip led to the investigation and subsequent charges filed by the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office.

“I commend this individual for the integrity to come forward with vital information about the fraudulent claim and urge others to do the same when they suspect fraud” added Commissioner Garamendi. Residents can call CDI’s Consumer Hotline at (800) 927-HELP to report alleged fraud.

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