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Eric R. Dinallo   Superintendent of Insurance  25 Beaver Street  New York, N.Y. 10004

ISSUED 11/20/2008 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

JAMESTOWN WOMAN WHO REPORTED CAR STOLEN ARRESTED

A Jamestown woman who reported her car stolen was arrested Nov. 12 when investigators linked the vehicle to a hit and run accident that occurred in Buffalo two hours prior to the time the woman said she last saw the car.

Christine Cook, 35, of 10 Arlington Ave., was arrested by Depew police following an investigation by David Hahn of the Frauds Bureau of the New York State Insurance Department. She was charged with insurance fraud and grand larceny.

Cook contacted Buffalo police and reported that her car had been stolen in the city sometime prior to 9:30 a.m., March 17. She also reported the theft to her insurer, Progressive Insurance Company.

However, Hahn said that an investigation revealed that Cook’s 2000 Ford Mustang was involved in a hit and run accident two hours earlier in which the driver fled the scene, leaving the keys in the car’s ignition.

If she is convicted, Cook could be sentenced to up to seven years in prison. She was released following her arrest pending a hearing in Erie County Court. The case is being prosecuted by Erie County Assistant District Attorney Justin Wallace.

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