Local businesses concerned over bogus money

BROOKHAVEN — Businesses in Brookhaven are on the alert after recent reports of counterfeit currency showing up in the city, although police say there is no indication that the activity is widespread.

A customer at a convenience store recently attempted to make a purchase with counterfeit $100 bills.

The customer claimed she received the bills from her bank, a store employee told The Daily Leader in Brookhaven.

About two weeks ago the newspaper received a counterfeit $10 bill originating from a vendor account at a convenience store, but which store was unknown.

Troy Douglas, an employee at Gregg Office Machine Co., has sold more than 20 counterfeit currency detector pens within the last week, a noticeable jump in sales.

Bobby Bell, Brookhaven assistant police chief, has not seen a rash of counterfeit currency in the city.

“We see counterfeit money every once and a while,” Bell said. “We don’t see that much of it, but we do have our share for being a small town. It’s mostly from people passing through.”

Bell said that Brookhaven restaurants tend to receive fake currency more often than other businesses.

Bank of Brookhaven Senior Vice President Shannon E. Aker said counterfeit money appears in Brookhaven in cycles.

“This past year it was around the holidays,” Aker said.

Lincoln County Sheriff Steve Rushing also said that when forged currency appears in Lincoln County it does so around the holidays. Otherwise counterfeit money in the county is sparse. Typically, counterfeit bills appear much more often within the city limits of Brookhaven than in the county.

The phony $100 bill at the convenience store was something of an anomaly. Counterfeit money seems to be trending toward smaller denominations, at least in Brookhaven. Bogus $100 bills appear on the decline in favor of $20 and even some $10 bills. Bell said he used to mostly $100 bills when counterfeit money surfaced in the city. Now, $20 bills are more common.

Source: The Daily Leader

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