An Edmond woman is shocked to learn someone stole her checks from a USPS collection box, washed the ink off and tried cashing it.
The scam is called ‘check washing.’
Sally Ruhl says she put three checks in a USPS collection box located in the Crest Foods parking lot near the intersection of 15th Street and Santa Fe Ave. on Saturday night.
“I heard that people in secluded areas might break into mailboxes, but I didn’t think it would be a location that it would happen because it is so busy,” said Ruhl.
Turns out Ruhl was wrong.
By Monday, Ruhl learned someone at Walmart in Del City tried cashing the now blank checks.
The suspect was unsuccessful, according to Del City Police, after failing to produce a proper ID.
“They had written in their own information,” said Ruhl. “One check for $900, one check for over $400 and one check was still blank.”
According to law enforcement, thieves can wash ink of checks with common household cleaning products.
Del City Police are familiar with the scam.
“We do run into fraudulent checks and things like that, not normally this level of fraud if you will,” said Major Michael Arterbury from Del City Police.
Police encourage online transactions if possible. Something Ruhl says she will now be doing more regularly.
“It’s time for me to get up with the times and do things more electronically and not depend so much on the checks,” said Ruhl.
Del City Police are working to identify a suspect.
Federal charges are possible as a mailbox was broken into.
News 9’s Clayton Cummins is speaking to the victim, and has a warning from Del City police tonight on News 9 at 10 p.m.