Cops: Good Samaritan In Major Deegan Crash Turns Out To Be Hoax

Man Claims Injuries And Collects, Before Proven To Be Fraud

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A Bronx man was caught on video being a Good Samaritan after a truck crash last year. But it was that same video that led to his arrest for insurance fraud.

CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez reports on how a would-be hero turned into a hoax.

When an 18-wheel tractor trailer lost control and jack-knifed off the Major Deegan Expressway on Sept. 22 it smashed into a car, pinning it against the center barrier. Seconds later Juan Hernandez, 33, drove by in his SUV and stopped to help, running out of his vehicle to check on the injured drivers. Sanchez showed the surveillance video to Hernandez’s neighbors.

“That’s the kindness of his heart,” neighbor Betty Dennis said.

“He’s a good guy. He’s a great guy, actually,” Joseph Drew added.

Hernandez was clearly a Good Samaritan – at first. He is even seen climbing onto the truck cab to rescue the trapped driver.

But police said Hernandez quickly looked for a way to cash in and told responding officers he was hurt in the accident.

“I don’t think that was right,” a neighbor said.

Hernandez was taken to the hospital by ambulance. Police said the greedy construction worker later made more than $21,000 in medical insurance claims – a red flag for his insurance company, which confirmed Hernandez’s lies on the highway surveillance tape.

Insurance experts said bogus accident claims have skyrocketed.

Last year fraudulent claims in the no-fault private passenger market constituted an additional $241 million,” said Michael Barry, VP of Media Relations for the Insurance Information Institute.

Hernandez’s neighbors did a 180 after hearing the story.

“It is sad that you gonna try to milk somebody for money that you don’t deserve,” Dennis said.

“People always trying to get something over. There’s a lot of scam artists. It’s just wrong,” Drew added.

Hernandez was arrested and charged with insurance fraud, grand larceny and falsifying business records. He could’ve been a hero, but now cops say he’s just a hoax.

The drivers involved in the accident were treated for minor injuries. The driver of the car pinned against a barrier collected a total of $200 for his injuries.

 Does this make you angry? Please offer your thoughts in the comments section below.

More from Hazel Sanchez
  • Collector

    I have a rare photo of Norman Rockwell beating up a child.

  • Bell Toller

    The fake Good Samaritan’s last name is Hernandez.
    Do we need to go further?

  • KPMc

    Headline makes no sense. A person can commit a hoax but a person is not the hoax itself. What he did after the accident doesn’t take away what he did during the accident. He went to help people, which is why he was correctly identified as a good Samaritan.

    Now what he did later is attempted fraud. So maybe the headline should be more like…

    “Major Deegan Crash Good Samaritan Arrested For Insurance Fraud.

    But no one really cares. Mediocrity and less have become the acceptable norm while high standards went the way of the newspaper.

    CBS hires D-grade junior high school ESL students to write it’s headlines.

    • tclark

      “it’s” headlines?

    • CBS "Journalists"

      We all ride in a short yellow bus to work everyday.

  • val

    First of all, if he was illegal he would not be collecting any insurance money. Secondly, insurance fraud is rampant with all sorts of people, American or not. As an insurance professional, I’m disgusted by this, as it drives up everyone’s rates.

  • Bell Toller

    Lock him up

  • Danny DD

    In order for him to rap that much money, he must have accomplice. They should go after the medical providers and pharmacies to check records. They will find out who involved in this sham bussiness. Speakless, his is dump found!! Knowning that he was on video and still pressing his luck is unbelivable. Gentlmen! scam artist is not limited to any race or any immigration status!!

  • ray varas

    some Insurance companies commits a lot of fraud also.
    I think that to make a false claim is wrong.
    aig was one insurance company that received a lot of bail out money.
    I gess it easy to pick in the little guy and make and example out of him.
    Enron, maddofs,worldcom any one?

    • jorge vieo

      your an idiot

  • jimmyc

    what struck me is the amount of people simply bypassing the accident and making it more hazardous. as as if the accident were in their way ive seen this a few times after witnessing accidents, disgusting

    • Chuck R

      You moron!. You expect people to block traffic so that the ambulance cannot get to the scene? If you are not involved and no one is in imminant danger, you should just pass by slowly.

  • Yvonne J Alvarez

    Uh Bernie Madoff comes to mind. That is all I have to say. Be well, stay true stay honest.

  • nyc

    How did he get over $21,000 in medical bills ? Must have had someone working with him providing phoney bills ! Shame on the insurance investigator !

  • guest

    Oh please!! Whites, Asian, Jews, Blacks, Hispanics, all do it. Some just don’t get caught. This is not a matter of race….is a matter of crooks out there driving everyone else’s insurance sky high. I hope he gets jail for a long time and all other ones out there.

  • danny

    You racist dummies. I am embarrassed to say I’m an American with people like you still breeding.

    • I

      lol “people like you” Wheres your “celebrate diversity’ bumper sticker?

  • antiracist

    Just because this guy has a spanish name you ASSume he is an illegal immigrant? You need to go back to racist land because in this country we don’t take kindly to racist hotheads.


      People like you that need to get a job.
      You want every body elce that is working to pay.
      America was founded on WORK ETICS.
      NOT A FREE RIDE…..
      Why does the illegal immigrant go back to his own country and try to steal and he will find out what a jail really is not like her wher it is great to be in jail.
      Here the insurance company was there to help and this guy took advantage of me, an AMERICAN,

      • Americana78

        “AN AMERICAN” — you need to learn to spell and your grammar is atrocious. You didn’t take advantage of your AMERICAN education.

      • ray varas

        It wiill be good to the person to study a little history before expressing and opinion. the original habitants of this land were the native american, and the mexicans. books do not byte.
        everybody else is an immigrants.!

  • Debbie

    Another illegal immigrant, I’m sorry “immigrant” collecting on the American dream.

    • Americana78

      Debbie: You see a Spanish surname and assume illegal immigrant. There are plenty of Europeans here illegally but no one has jumped on that bandwagon. America is full of ignorant xenophobes like you…

    • ray varas

      more likely your ancestor were immigrants.
      do not be too hard on people, I mean We supposed to be good christian here do we?.
      When you go to the church, do you think about “hate your neighbors.”

  • story

    He is going to wish he never did that.

  • Stever

    One would think that an Insurance company would check their facts with the police before writing checks to crooks. They need to check this guy’s immigration status too. With a felony rap, they can ship him back to banana land for good.

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