Capital Region Bank Employees Catch Identity Thief Thwart Big Heist
There were some very attentive bank employees that knew something was wrong with the actions of an apparent customer. Their intuition paid off and the man was arrested. Plus their actions saved a real account holder thousands.
On Saturday, July 9th, a man walked into Berkshire Bank on Route 4 in North Greenbush.
The man walked up to the teller and asked to withdraw eighty-five thousand dollars from an account. The bank employees felt something wasn't right about the man and the situation. He showed an ID that coincided with the name on the account but it was a fake.
According to News Channel 13, North Greenbush Police Chiel David Keevern said,
They didn’t feel comfortable with the whole situation. They denied him the $85,000. Then he said, can I get #5,000 then? Again, leading to suspicion.
Who Was The Man Trying to Withdraw Thousands?
48-year-old James Chandler was arrested but it was later learned that this plot was part of a bigger scheme. Police say that Chandler is a homeless man from the Bronx who had been seen begging for money outside a gas station. He was approached by someone asking if he wanted to make some quick money. They said they would take his picture, make a license for him, and then have someone drive up to the Albany area to a bank.
This Scheme Has Been Happening More Frequently
Berkshire Bank Security & Fraud investigator, Christine Pickup says this has been happening more in our area. The scammers create fake IDs and then go into banks with the account holders' information and try to withdraw funds. She said that the staff has been trained to ask certain questions that the account holder would only know to thwart these scammers.
Chief Keevern said,
Vigilance is our best weapon in this world today and the bank employees did an amazing job in recognizing the signs that something just wasn’t right.
Police arrested Chandler and he is in the Rensselaer County jail facing forgery, attempted grand larceny, and identity theft. The man who drove him to the bank is still at large and police are looking for him.
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