Sherman insurance agent accused of fraud

By: Shelby Levins Email
By: Shelby Levins Email

SHERMAN, TX -- According to court records, Donel Sample is facing charges of misappropriation of funds and forgery of a financial instrument. Now a former client is speaking out, saying he helped initiate the state investigation into Sample.

Johnny Brown deals with insurance companies every day as a people's lawyer. But when he needed the homeowners insurance he was paying for, he discovered he had no coverage.

"I deal with stress every day. But it was an absolute horror - fear that I’d lost everything that I'd ever worked for,” Johnny Brown said.

An electrical fire destroyed Johnny Brown's home back in January. He thought the homeowners insurance he purchased from Sample Insurance had him covered.

"I'd called to make a claim; they said I didn't have any insurance. I quickly got to the bottom of that. I discovered Mr. Sample had pocketed my premium and issued a binder buy never gave me a policy,” Johnny Brown explained.

Court records show Donel Sample is now facing charges of misappropriation of funds - more than $15,000 and less than 20,000, as well as forgery of a financial instrument. Grayson County District Attorney Joe Brown says the two charges were filed after an investigation by the Texas Department of Insurance.

Johnny Brown fears Sample may have defrauded other people.

"I was told there was a pattern of selling insurance to the poor, uneducated folks, taking advantage of this group. Do I have any proof of that? No. But I imagine it will come out in trial,” Johnny Brown said.

We were able to reach Sample by phone; he says this whole case is being blown out of proportion and declined any other comment, referring us to his lawyers.

While Johnny Brown says he was able to get the home coverage he believed he had, he says this case is not closed.

"I'm angry, I wanted to file charges and I want to stop him,” Johnny Brown said.

District Attorney Joe Brown says he expects a grand jury to hand down a formal indictment against Sample Wednesday morning.

As for Johnny Brown, he offers some tips to protect you against insurance fraud, he says:

- Only buy insurance from a reputable agent
- Get everything in writing
- And check your policy; make some phone calls to make sure you
have coverage.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Gene Location: Sherman, Texas on Jul 29, 2012 at 10:38 AM
    News update, Donel is out of jail!!! Hallaluah! Did he get what he deserved? Yes he did, He got forgiveness. He isn't the same man today He was in 2010. He has mended His ways.
  • by here Location: gone on Dec 26, 2010 at 09:53 AM
    Ya now I guess the buisness is closed and no one has seen him He is hiding with momma and daddy. The thing is he knows how to bs the system and he will probably get off with probation and court cost. This man doesn't know what working a real job is HE NEEDS TO BE PUT AWAY.
  • by sa Location: sherman on Nov 2, 2010 at 01:14 PM
    wow.. can't believe this dumb A.. how could he mess with attny's money? i am glad he did though . now i know about him. i always go whoever is cheap..
  • by melissa on Oct 27, 2010 at 07:10 PM
    sorry, gotta make another comment. I price checked around town for business insurance, and donel was the cheapest, by far. which, now I know why. he actually brought 'my' policy to my business with an account number and all, looked totally legitimate. I did make my payments there, but wrote the checks to the insurance company directly. somehow, he was able to cash or deposit them in his checking account.thank goodness nothing happened, thank goodness in our year of 'non coverage', we never had any claims. by renewal time, I had figured out about my 'friend' Donel, so I called the company directly to renew for the next year. when they told me they showed I had never had insurance with them, and I told them my agents name, they kind of laughed it off. So, I totally dropped anyone he carried and found another company. Its just scary to think about what could have happened if we had ever had a big claim.
  • by no Location: more on Oct 22, 2010 at 02:48 PM
    ok people, no more talk about this !!
  • by srp Location: Sherman on Oct 11, 2010 at 07:21 AM
    In my line of business I deal with insurance agents every day. Some of them are really great guys and unfortunately some of them are very very bad. The #1 thing you can do to protect yourself is never under any circumstances give an insurance agent cash. Always pay with a check and make it out to the insurance company directly. Second, keep in mind that the the State Dept of Insurance is in place to protect you as a consumer. All complaints should be sent to the state as well as the insurance company they represent. It will be dealt with. If you don't notify the appropriate channels nothing can be done about it.
  • by me Location: here on Oct 6, 2010 at 02:08 PM
    man i bet he is busy fielding calls !!!
  • by Grayson Location: Local on Oct 5, 2010 at 06:21 PM
    Funny! I hope this idiot goes to prison for many years. Never mess with a man's money, especially an attorney's dur.
  • by Anonymous on Oct 5, 2010 at 01:22 PM
    are you kidding me, he did this to a lawyer, especially Johnny Brown....Would be like selling dope to Sheriff Gary and hoping not to get caught! WOW, what an idiot!
  • by Anonymous on Oct 5, 2010 at 01:19 PM
    Let me get this straight, a person defending this sdcumbag tells others to stop dogging his drinking buddy and post their name, but he does not post his. If anyone lost to Donel at poker, he was playing with someone elses money, probably from an insurance policy and most likely cheated to win the hand. I know this turd very well, never had a policy with him buy had an idea he was doing this for quite some time. Just could not prove anything. He is a cheat and a liar. If you have a policy with him, find another agent and move it immediately. I have first hand knowledge that he has done this to countless clients. His ex-wife works for another insurance agency. Donel lies so often, he cannot tell the difference between a lie and the truth. What comes around, goes around, sometimes the wheel does not turn as fast as we would like, but lordy it does come back around! As for the questions on here, call the company that it is written with.
Sherman 4201 Texoma Pkwy (903) 892 -8123 Ardmore 2624 S. Commerce (580) 223-0946
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