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Check Fraud Scam: Suspects steal purses and deposit bogus checks

BURLINGTON, Ky. (Angela Ingram) -- Thieves break windows, steal purses, then use stolen checks for an elaborate scam.

Five victims reported having their purses stolen in a two day period.  Erin Brockman's car window is fixed, someone broke it about a week ago.
She was walking her dogs at Idlewild Park in Burlington. 

Brockman said, "And then my purse was, you couldn't even see it underneath the seat so I don't know how they were able to, I guess they were assuming that women put purses underneath their seat  and they broke in and grabbed it."
Thieves stole two other purses from cars in the park last Tuesday.  A day before purses were stolen from cars in Park Hills and Florence.  Surveillance pictures show a suspect who went to  local banks to deposit fraudulent checks from the stolen purses.

Tom Scheben of the Boone County Sheriff's Office said, "They're writing a check from victim 1 to victim 2, if you will, and they have all their information.  They have their checkbook.  They have their deposit ticket. They have their ID's and so they write a check for a pretty good amount."
The suspects ask the teller to deposit half of the funds from the check and they get the other half in cash.

Scheben continues, "So it looks at face value legitimate.  It doesn't raise any suspicions."    

Deputies don't know if this man is local.  There are similar scams that originate back to a group called the "Felony Lane Gang" that started in Florida.  On Friday, a bank called Erin and said a woman had just used Erin's stolen ID in Florida to try and deposit a bogus check, but the teller didn't fall for it.

Erin Brockman tells us, "Said that she was me.  She had my savings account number.  My cellphone number and she was trying to cash someone else's check into my account so they can get cash back."

A worker at the Florida bank told Erin that the woman who tried to use her ID in Boca Raton had altered her appearance to look like Erin.  Deputies say the checks were written for as much as 3,000 dollars.

If you recognize the man in the photos call our partners at Crime Stoppers at 352-3040.

Follow Angela Ingram on Twitter @newslaw1 and LIKE her on Facebook




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