Check scam targets business
By LPR Staff
A local business announced last week that an individual has been distributing bad checks bearing the name of a legendary local restaurant.
Terry Black said that two checks had been presented for cashing locally bearing the name and address of Black”s Barbecue, with individuals claiming that they were payroll checks.
“The checks used the name of Black”s Barbecue as the payor,” Black said. “The checks were [drawn] on a Wells Fargo bank that listed the Caldwell County Criminal District Attorney”s Office as the bank address.”
Black reminded potential victims that there is no Wells Fargo bank branch in Lockhart.
“It”s almost funny that they used the address of the district attorney”s office as the bank address,” Black said in a phone interview on Monday.
He said the two checks were both issued for less than $300, but assured the community and restaurant employees that Black”s Barbecue has nothing to do with the fraudulent checks.
“I think they probably just picked Black”s Barbecue because it”s a known business and the cashiers might not take the time to go through the proper verification process before cashing the checks.”
Before cashing checks, businesses are reminded to follow a few simple rules to ensure the checks are valid.
First and foremost, cashiers should verify the name, address, telephone number and driver”s license or identification number of the person presenting the check. Although this information is often printed on personal checks, the person accepting the check should ask to see photo identification, which should confirm the information.
Make sure to look at the bank information — all checks should list the name, address and telephone number on the check.
In most cases, businesses can protect themselves by avoiding cashing two-party or payroll checks.
At press time, the Lockhart Police Department had not released any information regarding possible suspects in this check-forgery scheme.
However, Black warned that another business could be the forger”s next target.
“Now that we”ve found out about it, they will probably stop using our business,” he said. “They may very well go into the phone book and pick some other well-known local business to target.”
Anyone with information on this or other fraudulent schemes is encouraged to contact the Lockhart Police Department at (512) 398-4401.