Ex-professional football player sentenced for insurance fraud in west-central Minnesota
BENSON, Minn. — A former professional football player recently pleaded guilty in Swift County District Court to felony insurance fraud involving a championship ring he had allegedly reported as stolen.
Brent Dwayne Griffith, 51, of Sartell, formerly of Benson, was sentenced to serve two days in the Swift County Jail, followed by five years of unsupervised probation. He also was ordered by Judge Rodney Hanson to pay $4,805 in restitution to the Swift County court administration, plus fines and fees totaling $590.
The judge granted him a stay of adjudication, meaning no conviction will appear on his record if he successfully completes all the terms of his sentence.
According to the criminal complaint, Griffith filed an insurance claim in 2013, alleging the theft of an AFC title ring. The ring, which he won in 1990 while playing a season as an offensive lineman with the Buffalo Bills, was covered under his homeowner's policy.
The following year, after he and his then-wife had split up, his wife notified the insurer that he in fact still had the ring and that he had cashed a check for a $4,780 insurance settlement without her knowledge. At that point the case was turned over to the Minnesota Commerce Fraud Bureau for investigation, resulting in the filing of a criminal charge of insurance fraud this past summer.