Over the years that I have been handling insurance claims I have seen certain scams planned with such meticulous precision you almost admire the intelligence that went into the illegal undertaking.
However, as I reviewed the illegal insurance claims that have been brought to light in 2013, the one that brings me up cold is a life insurance claim filed by a father in New York, Mr. Karl Karlsen, regarding the death of his son, Levi. The father had in 2008 taken out a $700,000 life insurance policy on his 20 year old son. Levi had, because of certain personal issues in his own life, moved back in with his father Karl and his step-mother, Karl Karlsen’s second wife.
As the accounts have been revealed, Levi’s father asked his son to do repair work on his truck. The repair work was being completed in the barn and Karl, the father, was allegedly helping in the repair work process. Karl opened the door to the truck, as he stated in an interview, to remove the linkage. The truck had been raised on a jack that was described as unsteady. When Karl reached inside, the truck fell from the jack on top of his son crushing him. The issue is that Karl did not help in removing his son from under the truck or call for help; he left him to die. Mr. Karlsen confessed to the Seneca New York County court to walking away from his son and doing nothing to help him.
Claims adjusters love to second guess one another and the one issue that should have been closely examined by the life insurance company representatives was the fact the policy taken out by Karl on his son, had just been purchased 17 days before the death of Levi.
One other issue that should have been investigated was the fact that in 1991, Mr. Karlsen’s first wife died in a fire in their Murphy’s California home. The chilling thing about the 1991 fire is that Mrs. Karlsen was attempting to exit the bathroom window, but Mr. Karlsen had a few days earlier nailed the window shut with a plywood board using 17 nails to secure the plywood. The cause of the fire was due to spilled kerosene and the failure of a faulty electric light and for some reason, she was trapped in the bathroom with the boarded-up window.
Mr. Karlsen stated during an interview with The Post-Standard of Syracuse prior to his arrest that, “His ex-wife's death, his son's death and even a 2002 fire at his Seneca County farm that killed his Belgian draft horses, for which he collected $80,000 in insurance money, were all just coincidences.”
It is recounted for us in the Book of Matthew a true saying of Jesus which is “the love of money, is the root of all evil,” even apparently the murder of your own son and wife.