Burglar Tips Off Cops To Scam Going On Inside Home

If you're a victim of a crime who happens to also be a criminal, you might want to think twice before calling police for help. One burglary victim reported the crime to authorities, but when the burglar was caught he had a story of his own to tell police. Now the homeowners are in jail, too.

A burglar in Lauderhill, Florida got caught after he broke into a home. He confessed, but he told police that it looked like some shady dealings were going on inside the home he robbed. The burglar reported to police that it looked like the homeowners were manufacturing credit cards.

Police showed up at the home the next day and told the 38-year-old resident, Chenequa Austin, that they were there to investigate the burglary. Austin was just too happy to let the police come in and have a look around.

Unfortunately, she left a few incriminating items out in the open that authorities spotted.

"Chenequa Austin brought me through the residence to identify the path of the burglar. While inside the home, I immediately noticed, in plain view, numerous gift cards, debit cards, credit cards, and prepaid stored value cards readily apparent in various locations in the residence," wrote Agent Jason Lanfersiek in his report.

The agent notes that he saw an open closet in the house which contained a card embossing machine. When confronted, Austin confessed that her live-in boyfriend, 27-year-old Eric Jermaine Spivey, had introduced her to credit card fraud and identity theft.

He would manufacture credit and gift cards in her name and send her to stores to make purchases.

With permission, authorities conducted a search of the house. In addition to hundreds of credit, pre-paid debit and gift cards, they found thousands of dollars’ worth of merchandise. The couple had brand-new designer clothes, televisions, video game systems, iPads and more, much of which were in the original packaging.

Police also discovered almost an ounce of Ecstasy and a Glock 19 handgun. They ran ballistics tests on the gun and found it matched the bullets from an attempted murder case in Miami-Dade County.

Spivey’s phone was full of text messages about card fraud and stolen merchandise.

Spivey and Austin were both arrested and pleaded not guilty to federal charges of aggravated identity theft, fraud and conspiracy. Spivey’s lawyer says his client denies all charges and blames the issue on a domestic dispute.

Spivey also pleaded not guilty to possessing a firearm while a convicted felon, and a charge of attempted murder is pending. These charges are separate, and he has a different attorney handling them.

Whatever was initially stolen from Spivey and Austin must now seem very trivial in light of the numerous charges that the couple faces. In hindsight, they’re probably realizing that leading the police into their home to search and investigate anything was a bad idea. This is natural selection in action.

Source: Sun-Sentinel
Photo: Sun-Sentinel, 123RF Stock

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