On December 4, 2011 the New Castle Police Department received a report from a New Castle resident regarding credit card fraud. “They discovered some unusual unauthorized charges on their credit card,” Detective Sergeant James Wilson related.
Approximately $1000 worth of goods had been charged on the card at the end of November. The Department’s investigation found that the credit card had been used at several stores in Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess Counties. No purchases were made online. After viewing surveillance videos at the stores, the identity of the suspect was revealed: Luis Morocho of 141 Fremont Street, Peekskill. The card was confiscated while he was working as a carpenter at the residence in town.
Morocho came in voluntarily on January 10 and admitted his culpability. He was arraigned in Town Court by Judge Kraus and charged with identity theft and grand larceny. Bail was set at $25,000 and the suspect is being held at the Westchester County Jail.
On January 12, 2012 Morocho returned to court and appeared before Justice Zuckerman. His lawyer’s request for an adjournment until February 2, was granted. Zuckerman noted that Morocho’s last offense was for DWI in 2009.
Today, when the subject of identity theft is raised, it is widely assumed that the illegal activity occurred online. This incident falls under the same category because the suspect “assumed the identity of the owner of the card,” Wilson said.
According to Wilson, identity theft is “probably the biggest crime in the country.” “Be very diligent in checking your bank and credit card statements for any suspicious activity,” he advised.