Checks forged, suspects sought from East Texas mail thefts - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Checks forged, suspects sought from East Texas mail thefts


A man and woman are on the run accused of stealing mail and forging checks across East Texas.

Mail has been reported stolen from areas of Longview and Kilgore and authorities fear hundreds, maybe thousands of dollars may end up being taken from victims.

Kilgore police are interested in finding two people, a white male and white woman, seen shopping at WalMart, who are suspected of being part of a ring that has been stealing mail from Longview and Kilgore neighborhoods, and forging checks.

"Its a pretty common practice , stealing mail something you see a lot of times in the drug community, drug users, a lot of people that still utilize checks, that's what they're after, they'll take those checks wash them or rewrite them. One of those checks that was stolen out of Longview was used at our WalMart," says Kilgore police captain Roman Roberson.

The man and woman seen at the Kilgore WalMart, passed one of the stolen checks.

"You'll have a ring of people sometimes you'll have the people stealing the mail and others will go out and pass the checks, somebody steals checks they know who to take those too to get them washed," adds Roberson.

Victim Jolene Smith put check payments in the mail, and had to find out the hard way that her mail had been stolen.

"I got notified by my credit card company that they didn't receive my payment. We checked the automatic teller at the bank to see if the check had cleared and when we did that the check number was right but for several hundred more dollars that what we wrote the check for, and it was just cashed yesterday afternoon," Smith says.

This type of crime is nothing new, a similar ring was discovered years ago in Gregg county. But there is one new twist to this round of thefts, workers at the Kilgore post office say that last week outside mail drop boxes were broken into and mail was stolen out of them as well. Smith says the thefts make her nervous about using the mail.

"It's scary because you don't know what lengths people will go to now to steal your identity or take things from you," she says.

Police hope this video will help spot these two, and put an end to the thefts. Kilgore police are looking at further surveillance video that may give them more clues of the identities of the suspects in the case.

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