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Monroe Police Reports: Stolen mail delivers financial crimes

MONROE, CT — Mail stolen from a 63-year-old Monroe man’s mailbox on June 5 sparked thousands of dollars worth of fraudulent activity, according to police.

Police said the outgoing mail included a $210 check made out to one company and credit card information to pay another bill.

On June 7, the fraudulent activity was suspected on his credit card after four unauthorized charges of $86 and another for $100, according to the report. He is working with M&T Bank to correct the fraudulent charges and the bank issued him a new card.

Then on Tuesday, M&T Bank’s fraud department notified him that someone tried to cash an altered check at a Bank of America branch, but the transaction was denied.

It turns out the $210 check was washed and the amount was changed to $6,800 and the recipient to an unknown male. The victim confirmed the signature on the check was not his.

M&T Bank closed the checking account and opened a new one with new numbers.

The Monroe Police Detective Division and M&T Bank’s fraud department are investigating the case.

Crash in the roundabout

A 50-year-old Shelton woman suffered a small cut on her arm after being involved in a one-vehicle-crash in the roundabout at the corner of Routes 110 and 111 Tuesday morning.

At approximately 6:17 a.m., police said she drove south on Monroe Turnpike in her red 2001 Honda Civic. When she entered the roundabout, she hit a curb in the center, skidded off the left side of the road, went over the curb and hit a pedestrian crossing sign.

Air bags deployed, a window was blown out and the driver cut herself on the glass, according to the report.

She was examined by Monroe Volunteer Emergency Medical Service personnel, but refused a trip to a hospital for further treatment, police said.

She was issued a misdemeanor summons for driving with no insurance, operating an unregistered motor vehicle and failure to maintain the proper lane.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation was called in to fix the sign and the damaged vehicle was towed.

Scammers strike twice

A 60-year-old Monroe woman told police a fraudulent ATM transaction was made in Jamaica Queens, N.Y., withdrawing $1,003 from her M&T Bank account, according to a complaint made Monday.

A teller at the bank confirmed that the transaction took place at 7:39 p.m. on May 15. The woman was reimbursed for the full amount and issued a new card, and the bank told her to file a police report.

She was advised to check with her financial institutions for fraudulent activity on her accounts, as well as contacting the three major bureaus to monitor her credit.

Later the same day, the received an email from her employer about a fraudulent claim for unemployment benefits someone made with the Connecticut Department of Labor using her information.

The HR department of the company advised that she take immediate action.

Police said the claim was for $248 a week from November 13, 2022 to November 11, 2023 with a maximum of $6,448 a year. Monroe police also received three other unemployment fraud complaints since Monday.

She reported the fraud to the Labor Department and was advised to monitor her financial accounts and to contact the three major credit bureaus to freeze her credit.

Police said there was no monetary loss at this time, but the victim thinks her Social Security Number was compromised. She was advised to contact the Social Security Administration.

No purchase in Singapore

A 57-year-old Monroe man reported a PayPal scam on Monday.

He received an email about authorization of just under $1,300 in Singapore currency from his PayPal account, the equivalent of nearly $967 in U.S. currency, for a purchase at an Apple Store. The email had a phone number for him to call.

Police said the victim called the number, because he did not authorize the transaction. He was transferred to a supervisor and allowed the man remote access of his laptop.

After approximately three hours, the victim realized something wasn’t right and hung up the phone, police said.

He and his wife called the real PayPal and spoke to a representative, who instructed them to shut off the laptop and call the police. The victim told police he continued to get phone calls from numbers from different states, but did not pick up.

There was no monetary loss at this time and the resident was advised to monitor his financial accounts, contact the three major credit bureaus to freeze his credit, contact the Social Security Administration and have his laptop checked for possible spyware.

Executing a search warrant

Monroe police officers assisted New Haven police detectives in executing a search warrant at a Turkey Roost Road residence Tuesday night, helping them contact a 22-year-old resident for questioning in regard to an incident in the city.

Police also arrested him on a Bridgeport warrant for alleged motor vehicle theft. He was brought to Monroe police headquarters and picked up by Bridgeport officers.

There were no charges from Monroe police.

Not his phone plan

A 26-year-old Monroe man told police someone opened an AT&T cellphone account in his name.

He started receiving monthly bills in February, but did not report the fraud until the cellular company contacted him on May 30 to notify him it would turn to a collections agency for the unpaid bills, according to the report.

He told police he did not open the account and AT&T is not his cellular service provider.

He also told officers he lost his Social Security card in November and never reported it to police or the Social Security Administration. After the latest notification from AT&T, he reported his card lost.

He was advised to report the incident to the Federal Trade Commission, banks he does business with, the IRS, the local Post Office and the three major credit bureaus.

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