You are viewing the most recent posts on this topic.
October 4, 2013 at 3:59 PM
A 56-year-old Connecticut businessman who insures golf tournament hole-in-one prizes, but has a history of failing to pay, pleaded guilty Friday in King County Superior Court to one count of first-degree theft and two counts of selling insurance without a license.
According to the plea deal, King County prosecutors will recommend Kevin Kolenda, of Norwalk, Conn., be sentenced to three months in jail with credit for time he’s already served so long as he pays $15,000 in restitution by his Nov. 22 sentencing date. If he fails to pay the $15,000 before sentencing, prosecutors will recommend he be sentenced to eight months in jail.
After sentencing, Kolenda is to pay another $20,000 in restitution, according to the deal.
The money will go to two men: $10,000 will be paid to Portland man who organized a golf tournament in Vancouver, Wash., in 2004. He was forced to pay a $10,000 deductible to another insurance carrier when Kolenda, who had sold the man hole-in-one insurance, refused to pay a $50,000 prize to a golfer who scored an ace.
A second man, who scored a hole-in-one during a 2010 golf tournament in Snohomish County, will receive the remaining $25,000 — the amount of prize money Kolenda reneged on paying after selling insurance to tournament organizers.
The Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner (OIC) first issued a cease and desist order against Kolenda in 2004, barring him from “illegal solicitation and transaction of unauthorized insurance,” court records show. Investigators from the office brought the criminal case to prosecutors.
Kolenda was arrested in Connecticut in September 2012 on the King County charges, and was extradited to Washington that December. He spent about a week in the King County Jail before posting a $50,000 bond, jail records show.
In 2009, Connecticut officials fined Kolenda $5.9 million for illegally offering insurance without a license.
He faces similar allegations in Montana, Ohio, Georgia, California, New York, Hawaii, Alabama, Massachusetts, Florida,and North Carolina, according to a news release from the OIC.
December 14, 2012 at 11:33 AM
A Connecticut man who specializes in insuring hole-in-one prizes has been extradited to Washington state to face charges that he has failed to pay up following several tournaments.
Kevin Kolenda, of Norwalk, Conn., has been charged in King County Superior Court with five felony counts of selling insurance without a license.
The 55-year-old Kolenda is accused of failing to pass out prize money when Washington state golfers hit a hole-in-one during tournaments. In some cases, charities or tournament hosts had to come up with the cash, according to a Washington State Insurance Commissioner’s investigation.
Charging documents also say Kolenda ignored a cease-and-desist order and a $125,000 insurance commission fine in 2004.
After Kolenda was charged in August, he failed to appear in King County Superior Court for his Sept. 5 arraignment. He was arrested on a Washington bench warrant three weeks later by police in Norwalk. His transfer to Washington was approved last month by Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy.
Kolenda was flown under guard Thursday from Connecticut to Washington. He has been booked into the King County Jail and is expected to be arraigned Monday in King County Superior Court.
“It’s rare that we have to go to these extremes to rein in a scammer,” Washington state Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler said in a news release. “But Mr. Kolenda’s been thumbing his nose at regulators for years. Arresting him seems to be the only way to get his attention.”
In 2003, Kolenda illegally sold insurance for a tournament at Gold Mountain Golf Club in Bremerton, but refused to immediately pay when a golfer got a hole-in-one and tried to claim the $10,000 prize, charging documents say.
The following year, he refused to make good on a $50,000 prize won during a tournament at the Royal Oaks Country Club in Vancouver, Wash., court documents allege.
Two years ago, Kolenda sold coverage for a $25,000 hole-in-one prize at a golf tournament on June 14 in Snohomish and, once again, declined to pay despite numerous notarized forms attesting to the hole-in-one, according to the documents.
According to court documents and the insurance commissioner’s office, Kolenda is accused of running his scam in other states, including Montana, Ohio, Georgia, California, New York, Hawaii, Alabama, Massachusetts, Florida, Connecticut and North Carolina.
April 19, 2012 at 7:07 AM
Weather: More of the same, we’re afraid: Cloudy and showers, cloudy, cloudy, drizzle. (Haven’t seen that word in a while.) Temperatures in the upper 50s again, too. Monday and Tuesday the lows drop into the 30s. In April. The National Weather Service forecast.
Traffic: The map and cams.
Yikes, woman on fire: A woman who started a fire in the backseat of a Yakima police car has pleaded guilty to reckless burning and will spend 30 days in jail, according to a piece in the Yakima Herald-Republic. Police came upon the woman while checking into a report of a woman being chased by a man with a knife. She used a lighter to set her clothes ablaze.
Josh Powell, the fire and the 911 call. There was controversy over the way the 911 dispatcher handled the call from the social worker who dropped off Powell’s sons at a home in Graham and watched helplessly as the home erupted in fire. Well, that dispatcher has been reprimanded for the more than 20-minute delay in getting emergency crews to the scene, according to a story in the Salt Lake Tribune. Powell, who was long a person of interest in the disappearance of his wife, set the fire in which he and his two young sons died.
There is not points to locate on the map
A canoe in Puget Sound can spell trouble. And it did for two men who were in one when it capsized Wednesday between Manchester and Blake Island. They were wet, of course, and hypothermic, when they were pulled from the drink by police. Luckily, they were wearing life jackets. The Kitsap Sun has the story. (And exactly where is Manchester? It’s on the Kitsap Peninsula, across the Sound, due west of Des Moines, sorta. See the map)
Crooks and scams: We can’t stress enough how important it is for folks, especially the elderly, to be aware that there are crooks intent on scamming them out of their money. See staff writer Jennifer Sullivan’s piece: Eastside man loses $84K: Scammers steal from elderly by posing as their grandkids
Most-read stories this morning on seattletimes.com:
About The Today File
The Today File is a general news blog featuring real-time coverage of Seattle and the Northwest. It is reported by the news staff of The Seattle Times and edited by Assistant Metro Editor Nick Provenza.
Trending with readers