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Scamming cyclists, you could be next target

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MONROE La. (KNOE 8 News) - Here's a warning: you could become the target of auto insurance fraud.

It's something police are seeing more and more of bikers crashing into cars, and cashing in afterward. 

This intersection, 18th and Louisville is where a white car attempts to make a right turn.

But as the driver starts to let off the brake, you can see a cyclist rides in front of the car.

Caught on surveillance video, the bike and car barely run into each other, but…

"He laid over on the hood and I thought, what is he doing? And so then he hit the ground and I walked out to see what happened to him, and he was acting like he was hurt but he didn't look like he was hurt," said Talbert.

Shell Rapid Lube General Manager, Matt Talbert said not only did he see the whole thing, but he feels like it was intentionally done.

"Traffic officer came in and looked at the video and said ‘oh wow, that car didn't hit that bike,' and I said no it didn't and I think she said that day they investigated one that day or the day before and it's a fairly common incident," said Talbert.

Lieutenant Paul Harper with Monroe Police said if this happens to you, whether it's an accident with a bicycle, or car, take a lot of pictures, and or videos with your cell phone.

"The best thing to do is save these things, and to sit down and write out a statement for yourself and police that you can use at a later date," said Lieutenant Paul Harper.

Criminals will stage schemes to make some cash by filing false insurance claims.

According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, the average household spends $950 a year to cover the cost of insurance fraud in America.

Staged accidents can result in a bad record, lawsuits, and injuries or fatalities.

If you're in an accident, police said to also ask witnesses to wait until police arrive on scene.

If you think someone's committed insurance fraud, you can report it anonymously here: http://www.ldi.state.la.us/Legal_Services/Fraud/index.html

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