Archive for January, 2014

The long reach of identity theft

Friday, January 31st, 2014


The numbers of affected consumers are as yet impossible to predict, but mortgage credit experts warn that the recent massive data breaches at Target, Neiman Marcus and other retailers could have significant side impacts on some real estate transactions in the coming months, as damaged credit files depress scores and jeopardize loan applications and home sales.

The Target breach alone could touch as many as 70 million credit and debit card customers, according to the company. Neiman Marcus says that data on 1.1 million of its customers may be vulnerable to fraud. Data security researchers report that at least six other merchants have experienced data breaches from point-of-sale malware similar to what was used in the Target thefts.

Both Target and Neiman Marcus have sought to reach out to customers and have offered free credit-monitoring services. But credit experts say it’s likely that given the sheer size of the data thefts, large numbers of people either have not taken advantage of these offers or have, for varying reasons, not been aware that their data may have been compromised.

So what are the potential blowbacks on home sales and mortgage applications? Start with the basics. Identity theft, if not corrected quickly, can make a mess of anyone’s credit bureau files. Though victims may not be liable for the unauthorized debts racked up, their credit reports — and in turn their credit scores — can be damaged for weeks or months.

Listen to Terry Clemans, executive director of the National Consumer Reporting Association, the primary trade group that represents independent credit-reporting companies serving the mortgage industry. Clemans says that mass identity heists such as those at Target and Neiman Marcus have the potential to create “havoc on credit files for as long as it takes for the consumer to document [that] the accounts are due to identity theft and get them removed from the file. The impact on credit scores, although short term, is devastating because they are current defaults and [trigger] a big hit to the score. With the sizes of the breaches, this could be painful for a long time.”

Sarah Davies, senior vice president for VantageScore Solutions, one of the two major providers of consumer score models used by banks and other creditors, confirmed that unauthorized debts on credit reports “can have quite a big impact” and could interfere with certain transactions you want to undertake, such as buying a home or applying for a mortgage.

Among the scenarios that could begin surfacing as the stolen information from retailers is sold and used in the coming months:

• Home sales could be knocked off track by the sudden appearance of new debts on buyers’ credit reports. Many lenders now monitor national credit bureau files electronically from the date of loan approval to moments before closing. Even if you explain that you were a victim of identity theft, your financing could be put on ice until you and the bureaus clean up your reports. That could cause you to miss contractual deadlines with the home seller and, worst case, cause you to lose the house.

• Undetected run-ups of balances on credit cards could seriously affect “utilization ratios” — how much of the available credit maximum a consumer has drawn down — and cause declines in scores. High rates of utilization or “maxing out” are penalized by the major scoring models. Lower credit scores, in turn, may disqualify you for a mortgage, at least until you are able to document to the credit bureaus’ satisfaction that the new debts were the result of identity theft.

• Undetected use of your information to create one or more new credit cards could be especially damaging and time consuming to fix. Clemans notes that although merchants and the bureaus may be eager to help resolve identity theft situations, they are also on guard against attempts by consumers to blame everything negative in their files on identity theft. They’ll want proof and documentation before expunging the bad information. In the mortgage context, there’s another complication: Although independent credit reporting agencies, which resell and reformat the national credit bureaus’ data for lenders, can often help advise loan officers on ways to improve their applicants’ scores — a service known as “rapid rescoring” — they can’t help in identity theft repairs. That needs to be done by the consumers themselves — contacting the bureaus, placing fraud alerts or freezes on their accounts, then working to clean out the bad stuff, line by line.

Ken Harney’s email address is



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Authorities arrest man in a major case of identity theft

Friday, January 31st, 2014


It was a story seen only on KCTV5 News.

Dozens of blank credit cards, about $80,000 in cash, and an unknown number of possible victims.

That’s the focus of a major identity theft investigation in Johnson County.

The suspect, Jared Santiapallai, is from Canada. He came to the United States and stayed at the Lenexa Inn, where authorities found evidence that could put Santiapallai behind bars for a long time.

Sources tell us federal agents first spotted Santiapallai Tuesday near 95th and Antioch. They say he was withdrawing money from several banks. Agents stopped and questioned him, and during the questioning, found several credit cards with no numbers or names.

“I think it’s very disconcerting to see that somebody was in possession of so many tools of the trade, ready to defraud so many people and financial institutions of their money, said retired FBI Special Agent Michael Tabman.

After the questioning, agents went to Santiapallai’s room at the Lenexa Inn. There, they found dozens more blank credit cards, the aforementioned $80,000 in cash, and a re-encorder, a machine used to create fake cards with stolen identities.

Tabman said identity theft has come a long way.

“Every advancement we make with technology, credit cards, debit cards, is another way for someone to defraud us. Not that we shouldn’t use these tools, but we need to be careful and alert to our own accounts and watch out for the fraud,” Tabman shared with KCTV5 News.

Santiapallai has been charged with 14 counts of theft and identity theft.

He’s being held on a bond of a million dollars.

Homeland Security and the Drug Enforcement Agency are also involved, raising more questions than providing answers.

“It seems highly unlikely that DEA just stumbled upon someone at an ATM machine, so I would think this was part of a bigger investigation,” said Tabman.

KCTV5 News contacted the Johnson County District Attorney’s Office with questions about the case. The office said it had no comment.

Copyright 2014 KCTV (Meredith Corp.). All rights reserved.



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More and more Americans falling prey to identity theft

Friday, January 31st, 2014

Nearly everyone uses them.

Whether we’re going to the grocery store, the gas station or Walmart, we’re more likely to whip out a debit or credit card than cash.

They’re convenient, easy to use and accepted virtually everywhere. But as recent news reports have shown, they are also prime targets for identity theft.

And the fallout has been massive.

At least 110 million consumers were affected by the recent hacking of Target and Neiman Marcus.

And there’s always a chance that millions more could have their identities stolen in the coming months due to security breaches at other stores, according to identity theft recovery expert Scott A. Merritt.

Merritt should know. His personal information was stolen in 2006 and the situation wasn’t pretty. During the time he was disputing financial charges and dealing with business problems related to the ID theft, he was stopped for a traffic violation and arrested on a false, outstanding felony warrant.

“I had to enlist my U.S. congressman and convince the state police, the National Crime Information Center, the FBI and the Secret Service that I didn’t commit the felonies,” said Merritt, who authored the book ‘Identity Theft Do’s and Don’ts.’

“For a few years, I had to prove that my (finger) prints did not match the false record in question. After legal action, however, I was able to have this corrected.”

Merritt’s situation shows how bad things can get when your personal information is stolen. And a growing number of Americans are at risk.

Identity theft is the fastest growing crime in the U.S., with more than 12 million victims each year, according to NextAdvisor, an independent research firm.

Javelin Strategy Research’s 2012-2017 Retail Point of Sale Forecast reveals that cash is no longer king. As of June 2012, debit cards were the most used in-store, point-of-sale method of payment.

Debit cards accounted for 31 percent of payments, followed closely by credit cards at 29 percent and cash at 27 percent. The remaining 13 percent paid with paper checks, pre-paid debit cards, gift cards and mobile phones.

“I think this Target thing will force new technology,” said Phil Lempert, a Southland expert of consumer behavior and marketing trends. “Most of the European countries have microchips in the cards which adds another level of protection, but there are privacy and cost concerns here that have discouraged that.”

Lempert said the increasing use of debit cards — which immediately deduct funds from a user’s bank account — has allowed consumers to rein in their debt, despite the security concerns.

“That’s the good news that we know,” he said. “The problem is, without all of these advanced technologies we’re always going to have these kinds of issues.”

Pasadena resident Evelyn Allen has had her identity stolen two or three times.

“I had my debit card number stolen a couple of years ago,” she said. “I had used it at an Arco station in West Covina, and then I noticed a new charge on my card of about $200 or more.”

After talking to her coworkers, Allen discovered that they had also been hacked. And all of them had purchased gas at the same Arco station.

Those thefts were likely accomplished via a skimming device. Thieves often place them on card readers at gas station pumps to record credit and debit card information and PIN numbers. The devices blend in so well with ATMs and gas station card readers that the average consumer never notices them.

“You have a sense of violation just knowing that there are people out there who would want to take from you,” Allen said. “But when I shop now I’ve changed how I use my debit card. I only use it where you just have to provide your Zip Code, so they are not able to get your PIN number.”

Scores of other consumers have had their information stolen by hand-held skimming devices. It often occurs at restaurants or bars when a customer gives the waiter or waitress their credit card. When the employee disappears into the back to process the transaction they also swipe the card with their portable skimming device, which downloads all of the card’s information.

Merritt said shoppers would be better off using pre-paid debit cards, which aren’t directly linked to their checking accounts.

“The pre-paid cards are also reloadable,” he said. “But regular debit cards are linked to your checking account. That opens you up to fraudulent activity on multiple levels because all of your information is on that magnetic strip on the back.”

Merritt offers seven ways to guard against ID theft:

Most thefts occur in places where you do business every day. Either a place of business is robbed, a bad employee acts improperly or a hacker breaches the office through the computer.

Secure your wallet’s information. Photocopy everything in your wallet: photos, credit cards (front and back), membership cards — everything. Put the copies in the order the cards are arranged in your wallet, staple the pictures and place them in a strong box or safe.

Make sure your information is consistent. Discrepancies such as using your middle initial on some documents and not others, or having different addresses, can wreak havoc in proving your identity and can compromise your credit score.

Change your passwords at least twice a year on a non-scheduled basis — don’t be predictable.

While in the bank, keep account numbers and other data out of sight and avoid stating account numbers, Social Security numbers and similar information out loud.

Every time you speak to someone you do business with, write down the time, date, name and the purpose or outcome of the call. If an identity theft occurs on the vendor’s end, you’ll be able to reference those prior conversations effectively.

Don’t carry around your birth certificate or Social Security card. If you know someone is going to need a copy of your tax returns or your driver’s license, for example, make the copies ahead of time. This avoids the need for a firm’s employee to leave the room with such information.

Teri Williams, president of OneUnited Bank, said customers who use pre-paid debit cards that were not issued by their bank often have a tougher time recovering funds that have been stolen.

“When you use a card that was issued through your bank you already have a relationship with that bank,” she said. “So they would be more apt to alert you to problems and provide you with more and quicker information about the fact that your card has been compromised. Our concern is with individuals who don’t have that kind of relationship.”

Boston-based OneUnited operates nine banking branches, five of which are in the Los Angeles area.

“We had a couple hundred customers who were affected by this recent compromise with Target and Neiman Marcus,” Williams said. “They were identified by the retailers and we are issuing new cards to those customers.”

On Wednesday, Target spokeswoman Molly Snyder said the cyber criminals who breached its system used credentials they stole from one of the retailer’s vendors.

“The ongoing forensic investigation has indicated that the intruder stole a vendor’s credentials, which were used to access our system,” Snyder said in a statement.

Williams said her bank has a variety of fraud-detection measures in place that are designed to protect customers.

“We monitor our customers’ card usage on a day-to-day basis to see how they are being used,” she said. “If there are anomalies we’ll bring that person to the phone and alert them. There are things we do to ensure that the cards are in the hands of the actual holders.”

Allen suffered a more recent ID theft when someone stole her Netflix information and used that to rent movies using her credit card number. Fortunately, her bank was quick to react and restore her funds in both that incident and when her debit card information number was stolen at the gas station.

“It was a hassle for sure, but the bank handled it very well,” she said. “They deposited the funds back in my account within 24 hours. All I had to do was sign an affidavit to explain it.”

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Special Report: Identity theft nightmare – WALB

Friday, January 31st, 2014


Cassenda Nelson says it is both a physical and mental challenge everyday to get her mail.  Since 2008 she says being a victim of identity fraud has made her and her four kids life a nightmare.  

“My son, he’s six.  And he asked me “are we nomads?” Nelson said.

“And I’m like ‘no.'”

“Why do we keep moving?”

“I couldn’t explain to him that I had no money to pay bills where we were actually living,”she said.

While working as a correctional officer in 2002, Nelson broke her spine in a car crash.  Unable to work, she was forced to rely on Social Security payments. 

But in 2008 Nelson says her disability checks were suspended, because an income tax return reported she made too much money.

Nelson reported she did not file that tax return, but her payments were cut until she could prove the tax return was filed by an identity thief.

 “Yes, sir.  Every year around March, from 2008 to 2011, Every year around March they discontinued my payments,” Nelson said.

Unable to pay her bills, Nelson was forced to move seven times.  “I couldn’t even buy Pampers for my kids. It was just small things that I took for granted.”

Finally in 2012 the IRS resolved Nelson was an identity theft victim, and locked her account with a pin number to protect her. 

Now she is determined to pay all her overdue bills. “It is a struggle to try to get things back in order, but I can do it.  And I will do it.”

Nelson warns people to guard their financial identity, because the consequences are life altering.  “This has been tragic for me and my kids. It really has.”

As the mail continues to bring bills from the years she was a victim of Identity theft. 



Copyright 2014 WALB.  All rights reserved.

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Wendy Williams slams Phaedra Parks over Apollo Nida’s fraud, identity theft …

Friday, January 31st, 2014

wendy-williams-phaedra-parks-apollo-nida.jpgWendy Williams isn’t buying any story that “Real Housewives of Atlanta” star Phaedra Parks was unaware of the illegal activities that found husband Apollo Nida charged with bank fraud and identity theft. During the Monday (Jan. 27) episode of “The Wendy Williams Show,” the host made it clear that she’s no fan of the couple.

Starting off by referring to Nida as “Phaedra’s son,” Williams caught her audience up on the charges the reality star was hit with on Jan. 23, which stem from allegations he created fake companies, opened fake bank accounts and deposited stolen U.S. Treasury checks and auto loan proceeds into said fraudulent accounts. “It’s really bad,” Williams says. “Apollo might get to jail before Juicy Joe with this one.” Of course, she’s referring to that other “Housewives” husband in big legal trouble, Joe Giudice from “Real Housewives of New Jersey.”

Williams admits to having conducted an informal poll around set, asking if everyone thought Parks knew what her husband was up to before he turned himself in. “Of course she did,” she bellows as her audience nods in agreement.

“Those Bravo checks aren’t big enough to buy a new funeral home and clothes for Mr. President [the name she uses to refer to second son, Dylan],” Williams adds. “Somebody needed a job from some place.”

Nida, who was granted pretrial bail, will face a federal judge on February 12. This isn’t his first brush with the law. He was previously imprisoned from 2004-2009 for auto title fraud. Looks like history may soon repeat itself.

Check out Williams’ comments on the couple and their legal woes in the video below. They begin at around 11:30.

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Call for Action investigation: Vets at risk for ID theft

Friday, January 31st, 2014

FORT MYERS, Fla. – They served their country but now the card that’s supposed to help veterans may be putting them at risk for identity theft and it’s a problem the Department of Veteran Affairs has known about for at least two years.

When the VA first issued new medical cards in 2004, they claimed the cards protected the vet’s identity. Fast-forward ten years and we found out, that’s not necessarily the case anymore.

WINK News Call for Action found that a crook only needs a smart phone and a free barcode scanner app, and then any vet with one of these so-called protective cards is vulnerable.

It took us all of ten seconds to get veteran Jim Murphy’s social security number.

“That’s me…. That’s my social security number,” he said when we showed him what the scanner app pulled up.

Cape Coral resident Chris Williams served 15 months in Afghanistan as an army mechanic.

“Anytime you check in for an appointment, for medications, anything, you swipe your card before you do anything else,” he explained about the importance of those VA cards.

When we showed him how easy it was for crooks to steal his information he said he was, “pretty scared.”

Even worse, veterans like Chris Williams and Jim Murphy say they never knew this was possible, until we showed them.

“I think the VA should definitely get on top of that,” said Williams. “Or get with the people who are making these apps that make it scan-able, to make it not scan-able. That was just too easy.”

With this information a crook can easily steal a veteran’s identity, wipe out their accounts and claim benefits meant for the deserving. There are at least 20 million veterans in the U.S., though it’s not clear how many of them carry these VA I.D. cards.

In December of 2011 the VA published a report and at the top the VA claimed the I.D. cards protected the veteran’s identity because it doesn’t publish the social security number. Buried at the bottom of the page, you’ll find a warning which admits the bar code can easily be scanned, revealing private information.

Since we discovered that the VA has known about this issue for more than two years, we wanted to know when it would be fixed.

A spokesperson with the VA sent us this statement:

“The existing VIC ID card was put into use in 2004.  At time of receiving the card, Veterans have always been advised to safeguard it as they would a Social Security card or a credit card, to protect their identity information.

VA has begun to move to the next generation of identification.  The new card, the Veteran Health Identification Card (VHIC), provides a more secure means of identification for Veterans because the Social Security number and birth date will no longer be contained on either the magnetic strip or the bar code.  Instead, the VHIC will display the Veteran’s unique Electronic Data Interchange Personnel Identifier (EDIPI) number as the “member ID” on the front of the card and it is embedded in the magnetic strip. The EDIPI is the Department of Defense’s internal number.

Once necessary software changes have been made so applications used in VA health care facilities can read the VHIC bar code and magnetic stripe, VA will begin issuing the VHIC this year and replacing enrolled Veterans’ old cards.  Veterans who have had their cards on hold since September due to the transition to the new format (without their Social Security Number) will begin receiving VHIC cards early in February. Additionally, VA plans a communications campaign to Veterans in February  including the following:

    direct mailing,
    social media messages,
    launch of a VA internet VHIC website, and
    posters and information cards to be sent to VA facilities for posting in high traffic areas.

The VHIC will become interoperable with DoD.

Regarding steps VA has taken to notify Veterans of risk with the existing cards —  The card carrier that accompanied the VIC when it was issued to Veterans warns that the card should be kept safe and secure.  In 2012 and 2013, VA included the notification to Veterans in their personalized Veterans Health Benefits Handbooks (7.7 million mailings) and through Health Care Benefits Overviews provided to VA medical centers, VA benefits offices, state agencies, and Veterans services organizations.  The VA internet website carries an explanation of the Veterans Identification Card (VIC) and information about safeguarding your VIC.

The VA tells us that veterans should start getting their new, more secure cards, sometime this year.

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Two convicted of tax fraud, ID theft in Lauderhill – Sun

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

Two Lauderhill residents were convicted of tax refund fraud and identity theft after a two-day federal trial in Fort Lauderdale, U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer announced Wednesday.

Camilla Gonzalez, 29, and Patricia Alcime, 29, were found guilty of using stolen Social Security numbers and other personal identifying information to file hundreds of false online tax returns worth an estimated $2 million, prosecutors said.

Gonzalez filed 621 fraudulent 2010 tax returns on behalf of unsuspecting identity theft victims, claiming $1,738,639 in fraudulent refunds. The IRS paid out $1,858,386 in refunds directly to accounts under her control, according to trial evidence.

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  • Lauderhill, FL

Alcime filed at least 92 false 2010 tax returns in the names of unaware identity theft victims, claiming $222,652 in fraudulent refunds and the IRS paid $203,831 directly to accounts under the control of both Gonzalez and Alcime, evidence showed.

The false returns were filed between January and October 2011 through Luxury Tax Inc. The refunds were deposited directly into Luxury Tax, Inc. bank accounts at JP Morgan Chase Bank and SunTrust Bank or onto pre-paid reloadable debit card accounts, court records showed.

Both are facing up to 10 years in prison for each tax fraud conviction and a mandatory two year term for each identity theft conviction at their scheduled sentencing in April. They also forfeit $511,801 that had been frozen by SunTrust Bank, prosecutors said.

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Alamo/Danville/San Ramon police logs: Identity theft, burglary reported

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

The following excerpts were taken from area police logs:


No crimes were reported in Alamo.



  • IDENTITY THEFT — 11:52 a.m. An identity theft was reported, 400 block of Bolero Drive.

  • BURGLARY — 3:07 p.m. Police received a report of burglary, 100 block of Alta Vista Way.

  • GRAND THEFT — 3:50 p.m. A grand theft was reported, 100 block of Zephyr Place.

    FRIDAY, JAN. 17

  • DRUGS — 3:03 p.m. An arrest was made for possession of a controlled substance, Danville Denny’s.

  • DUI — 11:13 p.m. A suspect was arrested for driving while drunk, East Prospect Avenue and Hartz Avenue.


  • DUI — 1:57 a.m. An arrest was made for driving under the influence of alcohol, Boulevard/ Fountain Springs.

  • BURGLARY — AUTO — 11:44 a.m. Property was reported stolen after a vehicle break-in, Danville Lucky’s.

  • PETTY THEFT — 3:07 p.m. A petty theft was reported, Charlotte Wood Elementary School.

    SUNDAY, JAN. 19

  • CHILD ABUSE — 6:13 p.m. A suspect was arrested for child abuse, 200 block of Linda Mesa Avenue.

  • DUI — 8:04 p.m. An arrest was made for driving under the influence of alcohol, Camino Tassajara and Sycamore Valley Road.

    MONDAY, JAN. 20

  • BATTERY — 12:59 a.m. A battery was reported, Meenar Music Club.

  • HARASSMENT — 6:20 p.m. Harassment was reported, 100 block of Estrella Circle.

  • BURGLARY — 7:45 p.m. The first of two reports of residential burglary was in the 500 block of Contada Circle. The second was at 7:49 p.m., 900 block of Richard Lane.

    TUESDAY, JAN. 21

  • STOLEN VEHICLE — 5:50 a.m. A vehicle was reported, stolen, 200 block of Dove Creek Lane.

  • VANDALISM — 8:28 a.m. Vandalism was reported, 3000 block of Stone Valley Road.

  • FRAUD — 8:55 a.m. A credit card fraud was reported, Danville Safeway.

  • GRAND THEFT — 10:22 a.m. A grand theft was reported, 700 block of El Pintado Road.

  • MISSING PERSON — 1:52 p.m. A person was reported missing, 700 block of Park Hill Road.

  • DUI — 10:53 a.m. A suspect was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol, El Cerro Boulevard and Garden Creek Place.


  • RECKLESS — 9:09 p.m. Police received a report of a reckless driver at El Cerro Boulevard and Interstate 680.



  • PETTY THEFT — 10:07 a.m. A petty theft was reported, 400 block of Bolero Drive.

  • BURGLARY-AUTO — 1:51 a.m. Property was reported stolen after a vehicle break-in, 2500 block of Derby Drive.

  • IDENTITY THEFT — 5:13 p.m. An identity theft was reported, 6800 Aberdale Circle.

  • ARREST — 8:28 p.m. A suspect was arrested for reckless driving, Bollinger Canyon Road and Marsh.

    FRIDAY, JAN. 17

  • VANDALISM — 1:11 p.m. Vandalism was reported, 6100 block of Bollinger Canyon Road.

  • VIOLATION — 3:19 p.m. A custody order violation was reported, 4000 block of Marblehead Drive.

  • DRUGS — 3:59 p.m. A suspect was arrested for being under the influence of a controlled substance, Dougherty and Stoneleaf Roads.

  • BURGLARY — 7:18 p.m. The first of two reports residential burglary was in the 2700 block of Derby Drive. The second was at 10 p.m., 100 block of Valdivia Circle.

  • BATTERY — 7:34 p.m. An arrest was made for battery, 3500 block of Sleeping Meadow Way.

  • BURGLARY — 7:38 p.m. A commercial burglary was reported, 2500 block of San Ramon Valley Boulevard.

  • DUI — 10:50 p.m. A suspect was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol, Old Ranch and Dougherty Roads.


  • DUI — 1:43 a.m. An arrest was made for driving under the influence of alcohol, San Ramon Valley Boulevard and Jewell Terrace.

  • WARRANT — 7:17 a.m. The first of three warrant arrests was in the 200 block of Sun Ridge Drive. Others were at 2:42 p.m. in the 19000 block of San Ramon Valley Boulevard and 8:05 p.m., 100 block of Fallbury court.

  • PETTY THEFT — 1:48 p.m. A suspect was arrested for petty theft, San Ramon Whole Foods.

  • BURGLARY-AUTO — 7:23 p.m. Property was reported stolen after a vehicle break-in, Brass Door Restaurant.

  • COMMITMENT — 10:40 p.m. Police assisted with the commitment of a mentally ill person, San Ramon Safeway.

    SUNDAY, JAN. 19

  • DUI — 12:40 a.m. The first of three arrests for driving under the influence of alcohol was at Interstate 680 and Bollinger Canyon Road. Others were at 2:40 a.m. in the 100 block of Crow Canyon Road and 7:45 p.m., Bollinger Canyon Road and Market Place.

  • BURGLARY — 7:20 a.m. A burglary was reported, 11000 block of Bollinger Canyon Road.

    MONDAY, JAN. 20

  • RUNAWAY — 1:38 a.m. A runaway juvenile was reported, 100 block of Valdivia Circle.

  • PETTY THEFT — 2:18 a.m. A petty theft was reported, 24-Hour Fitness.

  • BURGLARY — 9:44 a.m. A burglary was reported, 600 block of Amberstone Lane.

  • WARRANT — 9:55 a.m. Police made a warrant arrest, Chevy’s Restaurant.

  • BURGLARY — 11:17 a.m. A commercial burglary was reported, 100 block of Sunset Drive.

  • VIOLATION — 8:38 p.m. The violation of a restraining order was reported, 1700 block of Campanula Drive.

    TUESDAY, JAN. 21

  • BURGLARY — 7:31 a.m. Police received a report of a residential burglary, 4200 block of Reedland Circle.

  • VANDALISM — 11:26 a.m. Vandalism was reported, 8900 block of Alcosta Boulevard.

  • RUNAWAY — 11:37 p.m. A runaway juvenile was reported, 100 block of Valdivia Circle.


  • DUI — 12:49 a.m. A suspect was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol, San Ramon Valley Boulevard and Bollinger Canyon Road.

  • BATTERY — 6:02 p.m. A battery was reported, 3100 block of Crow Canyon Place.

  • COMMITMENT — 11:21 a.m. Police assisted with a mentally ill commitment, 3000 block of Ascot Drive.
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    3 arrested for identity theft in Mesa, Phoenix

    Thursday, January 30th, 2014

    PHOENIX (AP) – Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio says his detectives have arrested three people on identity theft charges, one in Mesa and two in Phoenix.

    Arpaio says a 34-year-old man has been arrested for using stolen identification to get a job at a Mesa restaurant. The investigation began in August when a woman reported being denied benefits, including food stamps, after being told that her household income was too high. Detectives eventually learned the suspect had been using the victim’s identify. Arpaio says the suspect was in the country illegally.

    He says two other identity theft arrests were made this week at a Phoenix business after a four-month investigation.

    All three suspects are held on suspicion of identity theft and forgery.

    Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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    Multi-state identity theft investigation underway in Oakland County

    Thursday, January 30th, 2014

    Identity theft reach

    Farmington Hills police are searching for a pair of suspected identity thieves that have stolen from at least 23 victims whove lost more than $11,500.

    Cities hit by suspects:

    Michigan: Saginaw, Port Huron, Flint, Auburn Hills, Jackson, and Battle Creek

    Ohio: Westlake, North Olmsted, and Strongsville

    Indiana: Noblesville

    Stores hit by suspects:

    Best Buy

    Home Depot



    Dicks Sporting Goods


    TJ Maxx

    Victorias Secret

    Investigators are searching for two suspects in nearly two dozen identity thefts that span three states including Michigan, report Farmington detectives.

    According to a release from the Farmington Public Safety Department, the subjects a man and a woman are suspected in at least 23 identity thefts in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana that has cost victims more than $11,500.

    The pair hit several stores and cities in mid-December, charging large purchases to victims personal accounts, and using a fake Michigan drivers license, investigators report. They also applied for credit cards at nearly 10 department stores in the three states using a Farmington womans debit card information, said Cmdr. Frank Demers.

    Farmington authorities have released a surveillance photo of the pair, and are looking for the publics help in identifying them.

    Really, all we need is to put names to those faces and our investgation will jumpstart pretty quickly, he said. Tipsters can call in and remain anonymous.

    A $1,000 cash reward is being offered for tips leading to the arrest of the suspects. They are wanted for questioning by Farmington and Oakland County Sheriffs Office detectives, officials say.

    Call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP or Farmington police at 248-474-4700, or the Oakland County Sheriffs Office at 248-437-0616.

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