Friday, July 13, 2001

2 held in passing of bad checks

Cases may be connected

By David Eck
Enquirer Contributor

        Two men are accused of trying to pass counterfeit business checks at different branches of the same bank in Hamilton and Butler counties Wednesday.

        Both were arrested, and police said the cases are probably linked.

        Police say they tried to cash nearly identical fake checks within 30 minutes of each other. The incidents, one in Mariemont and the other in West Chester Township, were at branches of the First National Bank of Southwestern Ohio.

        “We believe there is some connection or contact between them,” West Chester Township Police Sgt. Matt Brillhart said. “It's just very, very similar. We suspect that this is part of an organization.”

        Britton Carter, 44, no known address, is charged with possession of criminal tools, felony forgery, obstructing official business, resisting arrest and falsification.

        Raymond B. Jones, 38, of Epworth Avenue in Cincinnati is charged with felony forgery.

        Mariemont police said Mr. Carter tried to cash a phony check for $896 about 12:15 p.m. Wednesday at the bank branch at 6880 Wooster Pike. Bank employees became suspicious and alerted police, Mariemont Police Lt. Richard Hines said.

        “He ran out of the bank just as our officer was pulling up,” Lt. Hines said.

        Officers chased Mr. Carter on foot for about two blocks until he ran into an office building, burst into an occupied office and closed the door. A woman trapped in the office with Mr. Carter was screaming as police arrived, Lt. Hines said.

        “This lady was hysterical,” Lt. Hines said. “When I entered the building and heard her screaming I thought we were going to have a hostage situation.”

        After he was in custody, Mr. Carter gave police two false names and incorrect information, police said.

        Meantime, West Chester Township police were involved in a similar incident at the bank branch on Tylersville Road.

        Police there say Mr. Jones entered the bank about 12:40 p.m. Wednesday and presented a fake check for $838. Bank employees, suspicious of the check, notified police. Mr. Jones was still at the bank when officers arrived and was arrested without incident, Sgt. Brillhart said.


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