September 28, 2022

Unitranche

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Overton Co. clerk forged car titles for personal loans

A woman working in Overton County used her position as a clerk to alter vehicle titles — creating fake new ones for herself — and get personal bank loans with her falsified documents.

The discovery of what she’d done was a collaborative investigation by the Tennessee Comptroller’s Office working with Tennessee Highway Patrol and the Tennessee Department of Revenue.

The clerk altered a 1949 Cadillac’s title to look as though it had been recently sold to one of her family members. The real vehicle had been destroyed in a garage fire around 22 years ago.

After registering the Cadillac title with the state of Tennessee, she used it as false collateral to obtain a $15,000 loan.

The clerk also altered documentation for a 1979 Ford that no longer exists. She registered it to the state and used the new, false title to obtain a $28,000 loan.

To avoid paying sales tax, she declared the vehicles as gifts, which required her to falsify state and county records as well.

The clerk sold a vehicle to a mechanic to whom she owed money and then allowed it to be registered as a gift to the buyer.

Investigators also discovered that the clerk removed office furniture, equipment and some flooring from her office space without approval from the Overton County Executive. What she removed was loaded into a trailer and taken to private property.

The full investigative report is available online.