GH man sentenced for insurance fraud

Was it a pawn shop deal gone wrong?
Becky Vargo
Mar 12, 2014

A Grand Haven man was sentenced Monday in Ottawa County Circuit Court to 180 days in jail and 18 months probation for reporting a stolen car that was never in his possession.

Jeff Allen Bramer, 38, pleaded guilty to a charge of insurance fraud in exchange for the dismissal of a false report of a felony charge.

Attorney David Hall said his client purchased the title of a Cadillac from West Michigan Pawn in Grand Haven.

“The vehicle was pledged to the Grand Haven pawn shop for security of a loan,” Hall said. “The loan was never paid back, but the guy was still riding around in the car.”

Since Bramer was not able to get the car, he reported it stolen, his attorney said.

“He couldn’t prove he ever took possession of the vehicle,” Hall said.

Bramer was also sentenced in a separate courtroom Monday on a charge of larceny of $1,000 or more. Hall said Bramer claimed a friend loaned him a trailer, got mad at him and reported it stolen.

Bramer pleaded guilty to that charge in exchange for two other felony charges to be dropped — larceny of a handgun and possession of a firearm in commission of a felony.

“It was a pretty good plea agreement for him,” Hall said.

Bramer’s jail sentence covers the larceny charge as well. He was given credit for time already served in jail.



Didn't know they allowed title pawn in Michigan. They got em on every corner down south. Also this dude needs to slow down on the felonies.


So does this guy just lay in bed at night coming up with ways to screw up? Seems like a lot of misplaced energy.


How many ways can you dig your hole deeper....

So lucky to have the felony charges dropped, perhaps his overall character is OK.

From the website of West Michigan Pawn

Q. Can I pawn my car?

A.Yes, but we will take possession of your car just like any other item in pawn.

Seems like WMP did not take possession? Storage a problem?

Q. Okay….I’ve got to ask….what about stolen goods?

A. Pawnshops are a business just like any other. But unlike many other businesses, pawnshops have a special set of laws that keep them on the straight and narrow........ (see website for all the details)

Still not sure how you can report something stolen and expect compensation for something you never had. Just sayin....


The Pawn Shop never had the car. Just did a very small loan on the title as a favor to a repeat customer. When the customer defaulted, the Pawn Shop was going to throw away the title. Bramer came in and claimed to be a professional repo man and asked to buy the title. At that point, it was just a worthless piece of paper to the shop, so they let him buy the title. What Bramer did was outright fraud. Plain and simple but the Pawn Shop did nothing wrong in any way.

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