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Richard Hoagland stole dead man’s identity to escape wife and create new life, arrested after spending decades with new family

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Richard Hoagland claims he stole Terry Symansky’s identity ‘to escape his wife’

Richard Hoagland, staged his own disappearance, stole dead man’s identity to escape leaving a trail of 2 wives and 4 kids in Indiana, 25 years ago

Hoagland assumed the identity of Terry Jude Symansky, who died in 1991, built new life in Tampa Bay, Fla

Arrested now at 63, after spending 20 years married to new wife under new identity

Charged with identity theft

A Florida mother, Mary Hickman and her teenage son have learned that the life they shared with husband and father, Richard Hoagland, for over 20 years was one big lie. Hoagland, 63, was arrested in the Tampa Bay area Wednesday for stealing and assuming the identity of Terry Jude Symansky.
Hoagland knew the dead man’s father,  knew that Terry  drowned in 1991 at 33 years old, before he assumed  his identity and disappeared from Indiana about 25 years ago. He was declared dead in 2003.
Hoagland who once lived with Terry Symansky’s father in Palm Beach, found a copy of the victim’s 1991 death certificate and used it to obtain a birth certificate from Ohio. He then used the birth certificate to apply by mail for an Alabama driver’s license, later  used to obtain a Florida driver’s license.

Terry Jude Symansky

Terry Symansky, died in 1991 at the age of 33, but Hoagland stole his identity to continue living as him

Under his new identity, Terry Symansky, he wed Mary Hossler Hickman in 1995. The couple lived in Zephyrhills,  Fla., where Hoagland worked, invested in real estate and even obtained a pilot’s license, according to the newspaper.
But in April, the real Terry Symansky’s nephew learned through that someone had assumed his uncle’s identity, and brought it to the attention of the police.
When he was taken into custody, Hoagland told officers he assumed the identity to get away from his wife,.
Mary Symansky, 54, was shocked,  as she had no idea about his real identity. After te arrest she found his real identification documents in a briefcase in the attic. She also found the deed to Louisiana property her husband bought in 2015 and a key to a storage unit. The Sheriff’s Office intends to search that unit.
The loverat had left four children from two different marriages in Indiana. His second Indiana wife had assumed him dead since 2003
Hoagland’s ex-wife in Indiana however, informed police her husband said he “had to disappear because he had stolen millions and was wanted by the FBI,” the newspaper reported. Law officials are currently investigating the claim, but records show that Hoagland has never been arrested.

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