In the News

New HEAT and IFP Coordinator Named

First Sergeant Peter W. Lazear Selected to Oversee Help Eliminate Auto Theft (HEAT) and Insurance Fraud Programs

Richmond, Va. (July 15, 2022) –First Sergeant Peter W. Lazear has been named the new program coordinator for the Virginia State Police Help Eliminate Auto Theft (HEAT) Program and the Insurance Fraud Program, taking the place of Lieutenant Keeli Hill, who was promoted to a new position in the Virginia State Police.

A 24-year veteran of the Virginia State Police, F/Sgt. Lazear served as a Senior Special Agent for the HEAT program for six years. Prior to that, he was a Special Agent with the Arson-Bomb Unit and a Trooper assigned to New Kent County. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Virginia Tech.  

“We are pleased to have such a qualified person take over the HEAT and Insurance Fraud Programs,” remarks Captain Clifford Kincaid. “In addition to his years of experience, F/Sgt. Lazear also brings a genuine enthusiasm and a collegial spirit that will greatly enhance the efforts to advance both programs.”

Last year, there were 11,638 motor vehicle theft offenses in Virginia, representing a 4 percent increase over 2020. “My focus for the HEAT Program,” says F/Sgt. Lazear, “will be to continue working collaboratively with law enforcement agencies across the Commonwealth, to increase our community outreach after two years of COVID-19 restrictions, and to tackle the marked increase in the theft of catalytic converters.”

In addition, F/Sgt. Lazear is tasked with addressing the even more complex problem of insurance fraud in Virginia. “What makes insurance fraud so challenging is that citizens often view it as a victimless crime,” he observes. “Insurance fraud affects us all, costing the average family $1,000 annually in higher premiums. We will concentrate on building public awareness of insurance fraud and how it impacts all Virginians.”

To learn more visit and

HEAT/IFP Program Office


Founded in 1992, the Help Eliminate Auto Theft (HEAT) program educates citizens about the theft of vehicles and their parts, a crime that costs Virginians millions of dollars each year. HEAT also trains and supports local law enforcement officers in efforts to prevent auto theft. The HEAT program is a cooperative effort of the Virginia Department of State Police and local law enforcement agencies across the Commonwealth.


The Insurance Fraud Program was established in 1999 by legislation approved by the Virginia General Assembly. The program’s mission is to reduce insurance fraud in the Commonwealth, a crime Virginians pay for through increased costs of goods and services and higher insurance premiums, by providing trained investigators and by increasing citizen awareness