Louisiana Woman 30th Guilty Plea in Staged Auto Crash Cases
A Louisiana woman has pled guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Mail Fraud arising out of a staged automobile accident with a tractor-trailer occurring in New Orleans, making her the 30th guilty plea in “Operation Sideswipe.”
Donisha Lee, age 30, admitted that on September 6, 2017, on the I-10 near the Almonaster exit, she was a passenger in Erica Lee’s 2015 RAV4 being driven by their former co-defendant, when he intentionally crashedinto a tractor-trailer owned by Averitt Express. After the staged accident, the driver exited the RAV4 and told Erica Lee to get behind the wheel of the RAV4 to make it appear that Erica Lee was driving the vehicle at the time of the staged accident. The defendants contacted the New Orleans Police Department and falsely claimed that Erica Lee was the driver at the time of the collision. Passenger A falsely claimed to the NOPD that she was Thompson.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, approximately one or two days after the staged accident, Coleman, Donisha Lee, Donreion Lee, Erica Lee, and Thompson went to an attorney’s office for the purpose of collecting money from the insurance and trucking company. Coleman, Donisha Lee, Donreion Lee, Erica Lee, and Thompson sought medical treatment from doctors and healthcare providers. Thompson was treated despite not being in the RAV4 at the time of the staged accident. Donisha Lee retained counsel and made a claim for damages. The total settlement for the Averitt accident was approximately $30,000.
On March 26, 2019, Donisha Lee , Coleman, and Donreion Lee each provided false testimony in depositions taken in conjunction with the Thompson Lawsuit. On April 9, 2019, Thompson provided false testimony in a deposition taken in conjunction with the Thompson Lawsuit. In these depositions, Donisha Lee, Coleman, Donreion Lee, and Thompson lied about the September 6, 2017 accident including, but not limited to, who was driving the RAV4 and the extent of their injuries.
Donisha Lee faces a maximum sentence of five (5) years of incarceration.
Source: U.S. Department of Justice