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Ocean City Second Home Owner Charged With False Sandy Insurance Claim

Dominic Rita, 79, falsely claimed his 12th Street home was damaged during Sandy.

A Burlington County resident who has a second home in Ocean City was charged with filing a fraudulent insurance claim for property damage related to Superstorm Sandy, Cape May County Prosecutor Robert L. Taylor announced Tuesday morning.

Dominic Rita, 79 of Southampton, was charged with third-degree insurance fraud, second-degree theft by deception, third-degree hindering apprehension and fourth-degree providing false statements to law enforcement.  Rita was released on a summons.

Rita owns a home on 12th Street in Ocean City. He filed an insurance claim totaling over $75,000, falsely claiming damages to his property were the result of Superstorm Sandy.

The Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office, Economics Crime Unit with the assistance of the Special Investigation Unit of Selective Insurance conducted an investigation that revealed the damages didn’t occur as Rita reported.

Rita faces 5 to 10 years in prison for the second-degree theft by deception charge, and 3 to 5 years for the third-degree hindering apprehension charge.

Taylor said his office will continue to work closely with insurance companies to identify fraudulent insurance claims.

Any Cape May County citizens who are concerned about insurance fraud should report any information regarding illegal activity and or any criminal activity within community, Taylor said.

Information can be reported anonymously through the Cape May County Sheriffs Tip Line at cmcsheriff.net and click on anonymous tip. Tips can also be reported through the Cape May County Crime Stoppers at 609-465-2800 or 877-465-2801, or the Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office at 609-465-1135. 

Bill Hartranft May 20, 2014 at 07:02 PM
Don't have all the details but I'm always pleased when authorities undercover things are sketchy. Let's see how this unfolds.
Patches O'Houlihan May 20, 2014 at 07:34 PM
Don't get excited. In government programs the amount of fraud or waste that is discovered or uncovered is in the less the 1 percentile. Don't forget to tack on the cost of investigating and prosecuting the crime. And no, the fines that the guilty pay don't come close to covering that cost either. Thats my hard to stomach truth for the day.

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