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Forsyth insurance-fraud victim demands consequences for disgraced broker

Don Purdon
Posted at 5:42 PM, Jul 20, 2023

FORSYTH — Rosebud County Insurance agent Kileen Hagadone has been permanently barred from conducting insurance business in Montana after a judge's ruling last week. But the impact of her alleged criminal activity is still being uncovered, and one of her former customers is speaking out.

“I always thought (Kileen) was a really exceptional person, and I worked with her husband for 26 years. He is a great guy," said Donald Purdon, a Forsyth resident and former customer of Hagadone, on Friday. "She needs to feel like she did have some consequences. That she did hurt people. Which she did, she impacted a lot of people.”

Purdon realized he was a victim of an insurance scam long before news broke in April that Hagadone was under investigation for accusations of questionable practices.

"We had a fire. It engulfed everything. We called Kileen and told her, you know, we had a fire. And she says, ‘Ok, you’re covered, just call the office and I’ll get back to you,’" Purdon said. "About an hour later, half hour later, she called and said, ‘Well, you’re not covered.’ And we said, ‘Well, what do you mean we’re not covered? We just lost 48 years worth of stuff, Ki.’ And she said, ‘Well, the paperwork never got done.’ What? What do you mean the paperwork never got done? We paid by the year."

Donald Purdon
Donald Purdon

One of the only words Purdon has to describe what happened to him: heartbreaking.

“You know it just, it’s heartbreaking. We lost 48 years' worth of photos, we lost DVDs. I lost 48 years' worth of all my tools, my welding, my construction, that we’ve been building up so we could retire. My wife lost a bunch of her sewing stuff, all of her office stuff. I mean, it was heartbreaking," Purdon said. "And we’re trying to recover from it. Now we got to borrow money to build a house that we shouldn’t have to do. So it was just really a stressful time."

In 2021, after paying his yearly insurance premium in full to Hagadone at Rosebud County Insurance, Purdon’s property was engulfed in flames, destroying nearly a half-century of memories.

Rosebud County Insurance in Forsyth
Rosebud County Insurance in Forsyth

“We lost a couple hundred thousand dollars worth of stuff,” Purdon said.

Stories like Purdon's started to pile up earlier this year, leading to both criminal and civil investigations.

“I think it’s going to be one of the larger cases in Montana whenever it comes to insurance," said Allen Fulton, the sheriff of Rosebud County, on Thursday. "We won’t know the depth of it until, of course, we get into the criminal case that I can’t say much of."

Sheriff Fulton
Sheriff Fulton

Downing's investigation found that customers who reportedly paid full premiums were later notified by insurance companies their policies had been canceled for non-payment. In other cases, attempts to pay premiums by Hagadone were rejected because of insufficient funds.

Press release from Commissioner Downing
Press release from Commissioner Downing

“With Rosebud County Insurance and the civil end of it, that is pretty much finished. It will move onto the criminal part of the case,” Fulton said. “We’ll let the criminal part play out, and see where it goes from there. Innocent until proven guilty."

MTN News made multiple attempts to reach Hagadone for comment, but she did not return any messages.

Fulton says a criminal investigation is in progress, which is something her victims say is necessary.

“What bothers me the most is it was like, it didn’t mean anything to her, you know?" Purdon said. "She just moved on. I mean, losing her license is going to be a big deal. She’s not going to be able to do it to somebody else."