A rash of incidents involving financial transaction card fraud and obtaining property by false pretenses has struck Mount Airy, with four businesses and an area bank victimized so far in a scheme netting hundreds of dollars in merchandise.
The crimes unfolding in recent days have concerned an unknown suspect representing himself as the card holder and purchasing goods by fraudulent means.
Those cases came to light last week, targeting the Circle K convenience store on North Main Street, Walmart, the Sheetz convenience store and 601 Vapor and Tobacco Inc. on Rockford Street.
The crimes resulted in total property losses of $368.
In addition to the businesses, the Carter Bank and Trust office in Hillsville, Virginia, is listed as a victim of the incidents.
Michelle Leah King of Hillsville, a employee of Circle K in Fancy Gap who apparently is the rightful card holder, reported the crimes last week involving transactions occurring earlier in the month.
The suspect bought $80 worth of lottery tickets and $18 in food via the drive-through at Sheetz; $95 in gas at Circle K on North Main Street; a jacket, Wrangler pants, socks and Busch Ice beer at Wal-Mart, having a total value of $66; and unspecified “consumable goods” valued at $109 from 601 Vapor and Tobacco.
At last report all the crimes were under investigation by the Mount Airy Police Department, which as of Monday had no further word on any other offenses perpetrated by the same suspect or his possible arrest.
“Our folks are still working the fraud cases trying to identify the suspect,” Police Chief Dale Watson advised.
It was not known if this might include reviewing store surveillance footage in an effort to capture his image.
The crimes constitute felonies.
Tom Joyce may be reached at 336-415-4693 or on Twitter @Me_Reporter.