Thomasville Police say several stores have been fooled, and there could be more counterfeit bills somewhere out there
As supervisor of a quick buys food store, Ronnie Searcey handles most of his store's financial matters. But he wasn't prepared for what Monday night.
"Right at closing time two guys entered the store here and wanted $2,000 in money orders and the clerk cut the money orders and took the money and realized it felt funny and realized it was phony money,” Searcy says.
The quick buys clerk didn't accept the money, but police say a clerk at this sunrise pantry fell for the scam early Tuesday morning.
And more stores could be targeted.
Police say one surefire way to figure out if you've got fake $100 bills is to look at the serial number. The serial numbers on all ten of these bills are the same.
"There are a lot of security features built into the $100 bill now starting with the paper it's printed on, it's colored fiber, different from any other papers you can buy on the street. There's microprinting that can't be photocopied, there are metallic strips that run through the bill itself when you hold it up to the light you can see,” Mark Scott explains.
Police estimate there could be thousands of the phony bills circulating in the community.
By having a watchful eye, you may avoid becoming a victim.
The serial number on all the confiscated phony bills is CB52615767C.
Police warn that store clerks may not be the only victims of a crime like this. Check any money you receive carefully, and report any suspicions you have immediately.
wctv6.com Extended Web Coverage
Counterfeit Bill Spotting Tips
- Check a suspected counterfeit bill against a bill you know to be real.
- The portrait on each bill has been enlarged and moved slightly off center to the left to allow for a watermark.
- There are red and blue fibers embedded in the paper that can be seen on either side of the bill.
- The surface of the bill has an embossed, or raised, feel.
- On old and new bills, the paper has the same distinctive feel. Genuine currency is strong and pliable with a unique texture.
- All redesigned bills, except the $5, have a color-shifting ink feature. The number in the lower right corner of the front of the bill looks green when viewed straight on, but black when viewed at an angle.
- A watermark of the portrait image is visible on both sides in the same area when held up to bright light. The watermark will be located on the right edge on the front of the bill and on the left side on the back of the bill. Watermarks are made during the paper-making process and are hard to replicate.
- The security thread appears in a different location on each denomination to help confirm the note’s value. For example, on the $10 bill, the thread is to the right of the portrait and glows orange when viewed under ultraviolet light. You will notice the words “USA TEN” and a flag can be seen from both sides when viewed against light.
- The redesigned bills feature microprinted words in two areas on the front of the bill. Different words appear in different locations on each denomination. For example, on the $10 bill, the word “TEN” is inside the numeral on the lower left corner on the note’s front. “THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” is repeated just above Hamilton’s name under the portrait.
- The redesigned bills have fine line printing patterns that are difficult to replicate. The fine lines are printed behind the portrait on the front and behind the building on the back. The lines are very clean and parallel to each other. If they are copies, the lines become splotchy or create new patterns.
If Someone Passes You a Bill You Suspect Is Counterfeit
The U.S. Secret Service Recommends:
- Avoid returning the bad bill to the passer.
- Delay the passer, if possible, without risking harm to yourself or others.
- Record the passer’s appearance, as well as those of any companions.
- If possible, write down the license plate number and make of their vehicle.
- Contact your local police department of the U.S. Secret Service.
- Write your initials and date on an unprinted portions of the bill. Place it in a clean envelope.
- Give the note only to a properly identified police officer or a representative of the U.S. Secret Service.
Source: http://www.bep.treas.gov/cd042500/fun_index.html (The Bureau of Engraving and Printing)