• Court orders man to pay $2M in child support in 'bizarre' case involving identity theft

    By: Bob D'Angelo, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

    Updated:
    FORT WAYNE, Ind. -

    An Indiana judge awarded nearly $2 million in back child support to a woman whose husband -- who disappeared in 1993 and was thought to be dead -- was arrested in Florida two years ago on an identity theft charge, the Journal Gazette reported.

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    Hamilton County Superior Court Magistrate William Greenway and Judge Jonathan M. Brown said Richard J. Hoagland owes his ex-wife -- Linda K. Iseler -- more than $1.86 million, including nearly $1.4 million in interest charged to payments he should have been making since 1993, according to court documents.


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    Hoagland had been considered dead since 2003, according to court documents.

    According to court documents, Hoagland, 63, abandoned his family in December 1993 and moved to Pasco County, Florida. He lived under the name of Terry Jude Symansky and remarried in December 1995. He and his Florida wife, the former Mary Hossler Hickman, had a child together. Hoagland also bought property that included at least one airplane, according to court documents. The family lived in Zephyrhills.

    Hoagland was arrested in Florida in July 2016 on a charge of fraudulent use of personal identification, the Journal Gazette reported.

    The real Terry Symansky drowned in Florida in 1991 at age 33. He was from Cleveland, moved to Florida and became a commercial fisherman, The Tampa Bay Times reported in 2016. 

    “Bizarre,” Tom Markle, an attorney who represents Iseler -- known in 1993 as Linda Hoagland -- told the Journal Gazette.

    Hoagland’s secret double life was unraveled thanks to Ancestry.com, Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco told the Times in 2016.

    A nephew of the real Symansky, working on a genealogy project, was shocked to see a Florida marriage license issued in his uncle’s name four years after his death. His uncle had never been married.

    Authorities were contacted in April 2016 and Hoagland was arrested three months later.

    After Mary Hoagland found out about her husband’s real identity, she told Nocco that she found his real identification documents in a briefcase in the attic, the Times reported. She also found a deed to property in Louisiana her husband bought in 2015, and a key to a storage unit.

    Richard Hoagland is living in Indianapolis and was recently released from jail in Citrus County, Florida, Markle said.

    Hoagland's attorney, Paula J. Schaefer, of Indianapolis, has not commented on the case, the Journal Gazette reported.

    A hearing is scheduled for July 19. 



     

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