DARLINGTON, SC (WMBF) - Two men are in jail after police say they cashed several checks that were found to be stolen.
The victim says about $8,000 had been cashed from the stolen checks. Now businesses are alert after police say more of the stolen checks may still be floating around the Pee Dee.
The stolen checks belong to the owner of Tuckers Enterprise. He said someone broke into the building Wednesday taking several stolen goods. He says he wasn't aware the checks were stolen until it was too late.
"The checks that were cashed so far were probably be around $8,000," said Bobby Tucker.
Tucker owns the business and says computers, a Cadillac and money from a vending machine were stolen but says blank checks were the last thing he thought to check for.
"They went to the back of the checkbook and took checks from where we were working," said Tucker.
And it didn't take long for the suspects to check out.
"We got a call from Wells Fargo, the manager said someone was trying to cash a check they said was no good and we followed up on it and found out these subjects were cashing checks all around town," said Darlington Police Sergeant, Kimberly Nelson.
In the past several days, police say 27 year-old Brooks Britt and 29 year-old Robert Warr successfully cashed several checks at businesses like Piggly Wiggly and IGA.
Employees at both businesses say things got suspicious when Britt visited the stores over and over with more checks to cash.
"I'm not surprised - stuff like this has been going on a lot," said IGA Assistant Manager, Keith Sokol.
Employees at local grocery stores say fraudulent and forged checks are common during specific seasons.
"Usually Christmas time is when it's the worst, usually income tax time isn't that bad but it just all boils down to the economy, people just do crazy stuff - anything to get money," said IGA Head Bookkeeper, Sandra Cortes.
Thursday, police arrested Britt when he attempted to cash another Tuckers check at Piggly Wiggly.
Warr was also arrested Thursday night after police recognized him as the suspect who attempted to cash a forged check at Wells Fargo days ago.
Now businesses want to warn others.
"I think every company needs to look at these checks hard so we can catch these people before they get away with the money, I'd like to see 'em caught," said Sokol.
As for Tucker, he says this break in was the last straw and plans to add some security to his shop.
"I'm going to put up some security cameras, I don't know what good it'll do, some of them cover their heads so you can't see them, but we'll put them in," said Tucker.
This case is still under investigation, it's believed there are more stolen checks yet to be recovered and police say more arrests may be made.
Britt is being charged with possession of stolen property, forgery and larceny with reference to the Tucker break in. Warr is facing charges for possession of stolen property, forgery and 2nd degree burglary in reference to the Tucker break in.
Britt and Warr are currently being held at the Darlington County Detention Center both on $10,000 surety bonds.
Britt and Warr are both scheduled for another hearing before a Magistrate for several pending charges.