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Chiropractor pleads guilty in fraud caseNovember 20, 2002
By Kimball Perry
Vincent Denittis needed another chiropractor to help him with his business at Colerain Chiropractic in Colerain Township and Valley Center Chiropractic in Roselawn, so he hired one.
At it turned out, that was a chiropractor with ethics.
When that doctor saw the fake bills Denittis was submitting, he notified Ohio's State Board of Chiropractors, which began an investigation -- and uncovered years of false billing by Denittis and a staged car wreck that netted him and his girlfriend $7,500 from an unwitting insurance company.
That investigation concluded Tuesday when Denittis, 31, pleaded guilty before Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Norbert Nadel to worker's compensation fraud and two counts of insurance fraud.
Denittis' girlfriend, Cheyenne Ryan, also admitted her guilt in staging the car wreck.
Denittis originally was charged with 15 counts of insurance fraud and worker's compensation fraud for helping stage the wreck and other scams in which he double- and triple-billed insurance companies for work he never did.
Even though he faces up to 3½ years in prison, he is likely to get probation because he is repaying the money he scammed.
As investigators were checking on the insurance fraud, they interviewed a secretary at Denittis' office who said she knew about it, saying it was done "just like that time they staged the accident."
That really got the attention of the investigators.
Assistant prosecutor Kip Guinan told Nadel that Ryan and Denittis promised Adam Funk $3,000 to crash Ryan's car into a tree off Summit Road on Nov. 25, 1998.
Ryan hid in bushes near the crash site, and after Funk slammed the car — at 70 miles an hour — into the tree, he got out, and she slid behind the steering wheel to call police and report the crash. She and Denittis, a witness to the crash, submitted a claim and collected $7,573.63 from Reliant Insurance Co.
Instead of paying Funk the promised $3,000 for crashing the car, they paid him only $300. He wasn't prosecuted.
As part of Denittis' plea bargain he must repay $25,954.
Ryan, 23, also pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count of insurance fraud, carrying a maximum sentence of one year in prison. She also is expected to receive probation but must repay the insurance company half of the $7,500 from the car crash claim.
In the other fraud charges, Denittis hired telemarketers to call people who'd been in car wrecks, telling them they could get free chiropractic exams. He then billed their insurance for those exams and follow-up treatments he told them they needed, even if they didn't show up.
The charges could result in Denittis, who has moved his practice to Chagrin Falls, Ohio, losing his chiropractic license.