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Beware of fake bills, SPD chief advises

Business owners and cash-handlers should be on the lookout for potential counterfeit $100 bills, Swainsboro Police Chief Randy Ellison advised last week. The statement of caution came after his department seized upwards of $2,500 in fake money on Thursday, June 24.

According to Chief Ellison, a local business called in the initial report on Tuesday, June 22. The manager of that particular business stated that an individual came into the store on Monday, June 21, and paid with a counterfeit $100 bill. He then turned around and bought a pack of cigarettes with the change he received after paying with the fraudulent bill.

The reporting officer checked the store’s surveillance footage but couldn’t make out the individual’s face. They were, however, able to obtain from the manager the tag number that belonged to the vehicle the suspect was traveling in. As of the time of the report on Tuesday, it could not be determined if the individual to whom the vehicle was the offender in the case.

Because the business wasn’t permitted to keep counterfeit money in the store, the manager then handed the bill to the officer, which was then logged into evidence.

On Thursday, Swainsboro Police Department received a similar tip from another area business. Reportedly, a clerk noticed several bills that appeared to be fake in her drawer during countdown. Officers responded to the business and checked the surveillance footage, at which point they observed an individual purchasing a Chime card at the customer service area and uploading $2,500 to it. The currency swapped for the credit uploaded to the card were all $100 bills.

As of Friday, July 2, the P.D. was combing video footage to try and identify the vehicle and tag number in which the described individual was traveling. No arrests have been made as of yet. The city police chief added Friday afternoon there have been no reoccurrences.

However, because of the two instances that did take place, Chief Ellison would like to urge business owners and cash-handlers to be cautious. Should you suspect you have a fraudulent bill, a counterfeit detection pen will confirm or deny the bill’s validity. If you don’t have a counterfeit detection pen available, you can check the serial number. All the serial numbers from the fake $2,500 seized last week were “PL 88364927 D.”

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