DA Prosecutes Woman for Making Fake Claims About Exploding Ecig
When Milwaukee-based ecig company, Durasmoke, received two calls complaining about exploding ecigarettes, they were instantly suspicious. Employees said they had never had a single incident or complaint until recently and then they suddenly had two complaints coming from within the same small city. After the District Attorney investigated the calls, she found that one woman made up the whole story in hopes of making some quick cash.
Breanne Court originally contacted Durasmoke to complain that her ecig battery exploded and burned the carpet in her rental home. She asked the company to reimburse her for $4,500 in property damages. Employees felt like the call was suspicious because just a few weeks earlier, a man from the same small town called claiming his ecig caught on fire and caused $3000 in damages to his apartment.
Durasmoke contacted the district attorney’s office, where Attorney Ann Targonski came to their aid. She also believed the claims were suspicious, especially since most people would file claims for damage reimbursements with insurance companies rather than retailers.
After investigating the situation further, Targonski could find no evidence to disprove the first complaint, but Court’s exploding ecig story was quickly debunked. It turns out that the 22-year-old woman doesn’t even have her own rental home, but resides with her parents. After the attorney confronted Court about the lie, she eventually admitted that the whole story was made up and she had called Durasmoke hoping to make some money after she heard from an acquaintance about the other claim.
Now Court has been formally charged with a criminal attempt to commit theft by deception. Targonski said it’s important for people to understand that making false claims to gain money is highly illegal. “Fraudulent crimes of this type result in increased insurance rates for all private retail companies selling consumer goods across the nation,” she said.
For now, Durasmoke is thankful to have the claim dismissed and to clear their reputation. They hope that consumers will continue to associate their brand with a trustworthy vaping experience.
Do you think Breanne Court should go to jail for making up this story about an exploding ecig? Should this be treated as a serious offense?