WEST ORANGE, NJ — In addition to various arrests and reports of theft throughout West Orange in January, the West Orange Police Department (WOPD) also shared the following reports of credit card fraud that occurred over the last several weeks.
Victim One: A female victim reported to the WOPD when she noticed unauthorized activity on her credit card after placing her purse down in the living room area at her place of work. According to police, the victim said she believes she witnessed another employee reaching into her bag and removing items from it, but that she did not realize the items were missing until she returned home later that day.
According to the police report, the victim then began to receive reports of unauthorized purchases from on her credit card, including $158.51 spent at Banana Republic, $109.70 spent at Gap Outlet and $8.30 spent on a Taxi service. The credit card company advised that she cancel her account, monitor her credit and contact the company if any further charges appear on her statement, according to police.
Victim Two: Another woman visited WOPD headquarters in January to report that she received notifications about several transactions between her current account and another account that has not existed since 2018. She explained that she was refunded for two transactions totaling $182, but later received a debit card in the mail from a “Sutter Bank” in Ohio that she did not open an account for.
The victim said that when she contacted the bank, the bank informed her that whoever opened the account did so with her name, date of birth, address and social security number. The victim also told police that her mother received a text from an unknown number, and that the message text consisted of two names that the mother did not recognize. The victim was issued an ID Theft package and was advised to monitor all accounts for any fraudulent activity.
Victim Three: When a resident received a late-night text message from “Bank of America” claiming that his credit card had been charged $400 and $12 for unfamiliar purposes, he contacted the company to inquire about the charges and subsequently reported it as fraudulent activity.
According to police, the victim could not recall the representative that he spoke with, but said that the representative advised him that an internal investigation would be opened.
The victim was also informed of the time that the charge occurred, at which point he told police that he had a friend staying with him for a few days who had left about an hour prior to the time the charge occurred. The victim described the friend and provided the officers with a phone number and possible location. He was advised to contact his credit card company and monitor the account for additional fraudulent activity.
Victim Four: A resident reported that he was a victim of identity theft after he received notice that a bank account opened in his name had been suspended for use of a fraudulent check. According to the police report, the victim stated that although a fraudulent check for approximately $2,000 had been deposited into the account, he had never opened an account at this bank.
The bank suspended the account when it became aware of the fraudulent check, and the WOPD provided the victim with an ID Theft packet to return at a later date. He was also advised to notify the WOPD of any suspicious activity on any of his financial accounts.
Victim Five: A victim advised police that he received a collection letter in the end of September stating that he was placed in collections due to a delinquent account in the amount of $6,803. He told police that he had contacted Sprint at the time and was told that some unknown actor opened an account in his name and address in Florida and used a government-issued ID.
According to the victim, the representatives would not provide further information, and he was advised to monitor his credit card for any new accounts. WOPD provided the victim with an ID Theft packet to return at a later date.
Victim Five: After losing his bankcard sometime in December at an unknown location, a resident received notification that the card had been used twice in New York for purchases of $92.70 and $1,994.55. Upon discovering the fraudulent charges, the victim called the bank and closed the account. According to the victim, it was not until January that the bank advised him to file a police report with his local department.
Click on the headlines below to read more West Orange police news from January 2020: