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ATM Bank Scam
ATM Bank Scam
Date:June 10, 2004
Contact:Lt. Jeff Love (949) 724-7112
Inv. Anita Reid-Green (949) 724-7170

IRVINE, CA – Recently, there has been a series of theft scams involving victims and their ATM cards wherein the Suspect tampers with bank ATM machines before a customer approaches the machine by placing plastic objects and/or adhesive tape inside the card slot. This causes the ATM card to jam inside the machine, making the computer shut down giving a false indication on the monitor. The Suspect stands close by. When the victim attempts to use the ATM, the card is captured inside. The Suspect then approaches the victim while talking on a cell phone. As the victim tries to retrieve their card, the Suspect tells the victim to enter their PIN # and press the cancel button. The Suspect watches the victim enter the PIN, but the card stays jammed in the machine. The Suspect walks away, giving the appearance that he is leaving. When the victim leaves, the Suspect returns and retrieves the ATM card. The Suspect then goes to other ATM locations and uses the ATM and PIN # removing cash from the victim’s account.

The investigation has revealed that the Suspect is at the ATM machine prior to the victim’s arrival, and also that the Suspect is watching the victim input their PIN #. Bank of the West at 14477 Culver, Irvine has been a primary location, but this same ATM tampering scam has now occurred at the Bank of America at 14222 Culver, Irvine as well as other locations. This Suspect has committed numerous crimes with this same method of operation in Irvine, Santa Fe Springs, Fullerton, Alhambra, La Habra, Costa Mesa, Huntington Beach, Temple City, Covina, Garden Grove, Baldwin Park and West Covina.

The suspect is described as:

Suspect has been seen wearing the same dark colored baseball cap with a white Mercedes logo on front.
Suspect wears dark rimmed glasses and has dark goatee / facial hair.

A possible suspect vehicle is:

Newer 2000’s dark-colored Chevy Suburban or GMC Yukon XL w/chrome wheels, rear double doors and roof rack

Members of the community are asked to immediately call the Irvine Police Department at (949) 724-7000 should they observe an individual answering this description or if they believe that they were a victim of this scam. General inquires should be directed to Investigator Anita Reid-Green at (949) 724-7170.