Sheriff Phil Redmond stated: July 8th, 2014, the sheriff’s office received a report in reference to Financial Transaction Card Fraud. The case was assigned to Detective Sergeant Scott Maple of the Economic Crime Unit to be investigated. The victim in this case, who resides in Maryland, reported to the sheriff’s office that he received notifications from his bank that his debit card had been used at several locations in Iredell County. Upon further investigation, it was found that the victim’s debit card number had been encoded onto a counterfeit card. The suspect attempted to purchase merchandise from the Wilco-Hess Travel Plaza in Troutman and made a successful transaction at the Walgreens located on River Highway in Mooresville.
Detectives were able to obtain video surveillance from both stores and found that it was the same person who used the card at each location. Detectives were able to obtain information from the Mooresville Police Department, which aided in identifying the suspect, Michael Gerard Berry Jr, 28, of Cornelius. On the early morning hours of July 8th a clerk at the Walgreens happened to notice the customer had attempted using 4 different transaction cards before one was successful.
The clerk, feeling this to be suspicious contacted Mooresville PD and this was the purpose of the vehicle stop from which the suspect was identified. Based on the information obtained, Detectives were able to charge Mr. Berry with Identity Theft and Financial Transaction Card Fraud. Mr. Berry was arrested on July 14th, 2014 by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, given a $10,000.00 secured bond and a future court date. Sgt Maple said this is a case that shows how an alert store clerk notifying law enforcement at the time of the suspicious activity helped identify and eventually charge the suspect.
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