A weeks-long investigation into the spread of counterfeit bills around Auburn has led to the arrest of three people.
It was New Year’s Eve when Auburn Police first released a photo of a man who used counterfeit money at a West Seventh Street business and asked for the public’s help to identify him.
Days later, the department issued another news release to urge those who accept cash to be cautious after the department said it had learned about “several other occurrences where counterfeit U.S. currency has been used or located.”
Police said then they have received several tips about the original theft as well as at least two other similar thefts.
On Thursday, then, Auburn Police said they’d arrested three people on felony counterfeiting charges.
Eleisha Morris faces a single felony charge of Counterfeiting. Police said she passed a counterfeit $100 bill at the Burger King at 1105 W. Auburn Drive on Dec. 18, then attempted to pass a different counterfeit $100 bill a second time.
Ryan Bogatitus has been charged with felony Counterfeiting. Police alleged he passed $1,200 in counterfeit $100 bills at the Speedway gas station on 7th Street and Grandstaff Drive on Dec. 29.
Dalton J. Smith allegedly ordered a pizza from the Marco’s Pizza in Leo on Jan. 1 and had it delivered to an address in St. Joe, where he reportedly passed a counterfeit $100 bill. He’s been charged with felony Counterfeiting.
Auburn Police said “many” tips from the public helped “clear” the crimes. The department reminded residents to continue to be on the look-out for fake bills.
“The Auburn Police Department would like to thank the public for their response in helping to identify and locate these individuals,” the department said in a news released. “Auburn Police reminds its citizens to remain diligent in accepting cash for services rendered. Please check over all bills for water marks, magnetic strips, color, and texture.”