Increase in Counterfeit Crimes in Wichita Falls

Store owners in Wichita Falls are on high alert. Police say they are seeing an increase in counterfeit crimes. Just in the past month several local businesses have been hit. 

Newschannel 6 talked to one of the store's managers and learned the bogus bills look very real and they are also very small bills.

We were able to feel, touch, and see the counterfeit money up close and could not tell which one was fake or which one was real. Manager Brenda Alonzo tells Newschannel 6 that is not the only problem. She is seeing fake tens, fives, even one dollar bills come through her store.

These counterfeit bills are something Dollar Saver Manger Brenda Alonzo is seeing much to often at all  her locations. Alonzo comments, "It's gotten worse but I guess it's just the economy and everything going on. we are getting counterfeit bills and getting more theft. Any way they can make a quick dollar they will do it."

Alonzo says just a few weeks ago a customer came in two days in a row. They tried to use the fake bills, but what surprised her was to see the fake five's and one dollar bills. Something Alonzo has never seen in her 17 years experience.. She says she is training her employees to be on alert at the register. "If you do not take that time to check your bill or have your employees check their bills you're going to end up with a lot of them. When they get to $10, and $20, $5 dollars even, they're going do about four or five on you. Especially if they know they can do it once, they are going to keep coming into your store."

Alonzo says if people can not spot the fakes because they look so real stores could lose out on a lot of money. Something Alonzo is trying to stop. "Do not come in my store cause no matter what they do we will catch them. They know they will not leave without being prosecuted. We will go to the fullest because we are tired of it. We are not going to sit here and deal with it anymore."

Brenda Alonzo says she trains her employees to use scotch tape to help spot the fakes.
She says if it is not an authentic bill the paper will come off when you put tape on it and pull it off. If that does not happen you have a real bill.

We also learned some of the counterfeits pass the pen test. The Wichita Falls Police Department says a variety of businesses are reporting counterfeit crimes, including fast food restaurants and grocery stores.

Natalie Garcia,  Newschannel 6