CHARGES: Western Pa. Tow Truck Operator Inflated Costs, Charged 27 Vehicle Owners Nearly $300K for Short-Trip Tows

April 18, 2024 | Topic: Criminal

Office of Attorney General, Allegheny County Police Charge Owner of Vince’s Towing with Corrupt Organizations, Theft, Insurance Fraud

HARRISBURG — Attorney General Michelle Henry, along with the Allegheny County Police Department, announced charges against the owner of a Pittsburgh-based towing company for inflating tow costs by charging “accident services” fees and other deceptive practices.

Vincent G. Fannick, 56, was charged Thursday with numerous felonies and misdemeanors, including 27 counts each of insurance fraud, theft by deception, theft by unlawful taking, and securing execution of documents by deception.

He was arraigned and bail was set at $25,000. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 3.

Investigators uncovered a pattern of Fannick charging consumers’ insurance companies with exorbitant tow costs by, initially, not revealing prices on invoices, then charging “accident services” fees. Those fees alone cost the 27 victims more than $100,000. In all, victims were charged nearly $300,000.

“This defendant allegedly preyed on consumers already in stressful situations, first by hiding costs when asking for invoice signatures, then by inflating prices for short tow jobs,” Attorney General Henry said. “Predatory, deceptive business practices will not be tolerated in the Commonwealth, and business owners who harm consumers to line their pockets will be held accountable.”

The Office of Attorney General and Allegheny County Police Department were co-affiants on more than 100 charges filed this week.

“These actions targeted unsuspecting members of our community during their most vulnerable moments,” Superintendent Christopher Kearns of the Allegheny County Police Department said. “We’re grateful for our partnership with the Office of the Attorney General throughout the course of this lengthy investigation.”

Investigators learned of the crimes in 2023, when a consumer reported their insurance company was charged $11,390 by Vince’s Towing — for a short-trip tow the vehicle owner did not even request. Of that total, $4,250 was designated as an “accident services” fee.

Law enforcement learned of 26 other consumers that, between February 2023 and February 2024, were subjected to the same scam. Vehicle owners’ insurance companies were charged between $9,460 and $13,105 for single, short-trip tows. In one case, Fannick charged $9,805 for towing a vehicle one-third of a mile.

Pennsylvania officials have been amping up efforts to educate consumers about predatory tow companies. The Pennsylvania Insurance Fraud Prevention Authority has a public awareness campaign based at

In December, the Office of Attorney General collaborated with Bucks County officials in charging a tow company with inflating costs.

Fannick will be prosecuted by Insurance Fraud Deputy Attorney General Grant Miller. All charges are accusations. The defendant is innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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