Buried truck fraud charges filed

Larry Ezell Photo: Mayes County Sheriff's Office/KTUL

Larry Ezell Photo: Mayes County Sheriff’s Office/KTUL

Two men accused of burying a pickup truck later reported stolen are now charged with insurance fraud. Arrest warrants have been issued for Robert Campbell II, 49, of Langley and Larry Ezell, 25, of Vinita.

The charges are the result of a joint investigation by the Oklahoma Insurance Department, Langley Police Department, Mayes County Sheriff’s Office, Craig County Sheriff’s Office, Delaware County Sheriff’s Office and the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture.

“Insurance fraud is a serious crime,” said Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner John D. Doak. “Bogus claims lead to higher premiums for all of us. These charges are the result of excellent work by several agencies. We were happy to assist with the investigation.”

The pickup truck, a 2014 Chevrolet Silverado, was reported stolen on Dec. 4, 2014. The insurance company settled the $28,068 claim about three months later. The investigation began after the custom wheels and tires from the missing pickup truck were spotted on another vehicle in Craig County. The owner of that vehicle told detectives he purchased the wheels and tires from Ezell.

Insurance Commissioner John Doak

Insurance Commissioner John D. Doak

During an interview with a Langley Police Department officer, Ezell said Campbell gave him the key to the truck and said it needed to “go away.” The truck belonged to Campbell’s roommate. Ezell said Campbell told him his roommate had lost his job and wouldn’t be able to make the payments on the truck. Ezell said he buried the vehicle to get out of debt with Campbell.

The Oklahoma Insurance Department, an agency of the State of Oklahoma, is responsible for the education and protection of the insurance-buying public and for oversight of the insurance industry in the state.