Lebanon man used girlfriend to lie to about accident, charged with insurance fraud

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LEBANON, Pa. – A Lebanon City man is arrested on several charges including Insurance Fraud for lying about an accident.

On June 28th, Tony Matula, 59, reported to police that an unknown vehicle had hit his 2014 Volkswagen while it was parked on the 100th block of S. 9th Street.  The next day, June 29th, Matula contacted the Lebanon City Police to tell them that a friend of his had moved his vehicle and struck a utility pole across the street, and that the friend had not told him about this before he made his original report to police.

On July 5, after their initial investigation indicated that Matula was lying about the accident, city police referred the case to the Lebanon County Detective Bureau.

Police interviewed Matula’s friend,  who initially said that she was driving  the vehicle and struck the pole.   She however, quickly recanted her statement, saying that Matula had asked her to lie to the police and to say that she had been driving his vehicle and struck the pole.  She also told police that at his request, she had provided a statement over the phone to Matula’s insurance company that she had been the operator of the vehicle and had struck a pole.

Police allege that Matula was the operator of his vehicle and struck a utility police across the street from his residence, that he made a false report to law enforcement verbally and in writing, and that he made a false claim to his insurance company, initially that his vehicle was struck by an unknown vehicle while parked, and later that a female acquaintance was operating the vehicle and struck a pole.

Based on the evidence from their investigation police charged Matula today with Insurance Fraud, Unsworn Falsification, False Reports to Law Enforcement and Accidents Involving Damage to Unattended Vehicle.  Following arraignment Matula was released on $10,000 bail.