Check stealing suspects caught - Coeur d'Alene Press: Local News

Check stealing suspects caught

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Posted: Tuesday, August 7, 2012 12:15 am

COEUR d'ALENE - A 28-year-old Coeur d'Alene man wanted for his alleged involvement in stealing checks out of mailboxes, forging and then cashing them, has been caught.

Coeur d'Alene police announced Monday that Michael G. Wilkins was taken into custody Friday night at the Lake Drive Motel, at 316 E. Coeur d'Alene Lake Drive, where he was staying with a 17-year-old runaway from Oregon, Coeur d'Alene police reported.

Their room was searched, and detectives found property the two allegedly purchased with stolen credit cards and checks.

Detectives also allegedly located a new printer and a package of blank checks, also allegedly purchased with stolen credit cards, police said.

Both Wilkins and the runaway, Lacey L. Fugate, were wanted in Douglas County, Ore.

Police said they plan to seek charges of grand theft and burglary in Kootenai County against the two.

Last week, police said Wilkins and Fugate were suspected of stealing two checks from the mailbox of an area business located on the 100 block of East Locust Avenue.

Police said they believe Wilkins was responsible for allegedly adding his name to the checks and cashing them at a local Safeway store.

An employee of the Safeway store indicated that Wilkins comes in to the store several times a day to cash checks.

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  • maddog94 posted at 4:17 pm on Mon, Oct 28, 2013.

    maddog94 Posts: 1

    Yes. I they were tweakers. To answer some of the questions. There is a chemical that a person can buy at the store for 3-4$ that will wash none magnetic ink off of anything in this case a check. They used that chemical washed the persons name off the check Michael then put his own name on there and forged the signature of who ever wrote the check.he would then take it in to Safeway they would ask for his I.D. His I.D. Matched up with the name on the check. They would then cash the check. Business checks you have to completely remake those. They sell the stuff needed to do that at staples. I don't know if Michael was charged with rape charges. But the girl got charged as an adult and sent down on a rider and spent 11 months incarcerated. She has her lfe together and a baby on the way. Michael is in snake river. I hope that answers your questions. Oh n to be on the safe side if u decide to send a check in the mail make sure you use magnetic ink. That way the theirs can only steal the check not the money.

  • KennyRogers posted at 12:04 am on Wed, Aug 22, 2012.

    KennyRogers Posts: 24

    at this time, anything is possible.. that is the reason why sometimes i hate being in a digital age but we have no choice since technology is getting more and more advance.. even if you say that you being careful with all you private information, you can never be really sure that this information's are safe.. Even those printed receipts with faded inkjet printer ink can be used to steal your personal info's and accounts!!

  • Bob Loblaw posted at 5:50 pm on Wed, Aug 8, 2012.

    Bob Loblaw Posts: 413

    Tweakers I'll wager.

  • LTRLTR posted at 2:04 pm on Tue, Aug 7, 2012.

    LTRLTR Posts: 1171

    My2sence: I understand your frustration.

    My driver's license has my photo and my signature, but the stores don't ask to see it. So there are those of us who take the precautions while others fail us.

    My credit cards have CID written next to my signature on the back. CID (check identification). Very few store clerks will ask me for my ID as they follow the company rules that do not want to make another person feel uneasy by asking for ID's. So thieves are given more liberties by the laxed rules of each business.

  • My2sence posted at 1:04 pm on Tue, Aug 7, 2012.

    My2sence Posts: 317

    I'm no criminal, I don't think like one, so sorry if I sound ignorant on this topic, someone could take my paycheck, unemployment check, retirement check etc. etc. etc. out of my mailbox, "ADD" their name to it....AND CASH IT ? again sorry if I sound dumb, but someone please explain to me how that could happen, with a check that also has my name on it, or do they white out my name or something, I mean seriously, how is this thief dupping people, I know it happens all the time, and this isn't anything new, but after 40+ years of people stealling, forging & cashing checks you would think someone would come up with a solution to halt this by now.
    Just last week I needed to cash a insurace check, and I'm not kidding, it took 15 minutes, they asked for my ID, not good enough, they asked for the stub that was attached to the check, luckily it was still in my car...not good enough, THEY HAD TO CALL THE INSURANCE COMPANY to confirm I was who I said I was !! .so you can understand my frustration when a thief like this can just walk into a random SAFEWAY and cash a check that wasn't even his, whenever he wants.

  • LTRLTR posted at 11:16 am on Tue, Aug 7, 2012.

    LTRLTR Posts: 1171


    Read the first paragraph of the above article.

  • Valley Girl posted at 10:59 am on Tue, Aug 7, 2012.

    Valley Girl Posts: 53

    Glad to hear they caught this thief! And in the company of a 17 year old girl, eh? Perhaps he will have some statutory rape charges added to the laundry list.....

  • heatherfeather posted at 9:38 am on Tue, Aug 7, 2012.

    heatherfeather Posts: 297

    Where does it say no ID was used? He stole checks and put his name on them. He probably did use an ID; that's likely how they tracked him to the Homeless Hotel down there. These people aren't to smart. Hopefully, the young girl can get her life together, and not hang around criminal puppy-boys.

  • LTRLTR posted at 9:30 am on Tue, Aug 7, 2012.

    LTRLTR Posts: 1171

    It used to be that stores would not cash checks and it used to be that store would ask for identification. Throwing out safety checks allows for more criminal intent.

  • My2sence posted at 8:55 am on Tue, Aug 7, 2012.

    My2sence Posts: 317

    "An employee of the Safeway store indicated that Wilkins comes in to the store several times a day to cash checks"..........
    and not one single time do they ask for ID ?
    "adding his name to the checks" ?....what exactly does that mean? that sounds different than plain ol forgery doesn't it?
    Is safeway now acting as a bank? cashing checks all day ?

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