The Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office Detective Bureau reports the investigation into a larceny that occurred on Monday during which money was stolen from a Westchester resident's bank account through fraudulent withdrawals.
A large amount of money was stolen and the suspect in this incident is thought to possibly be part of a larger group called the “Felony Lane Gang,” which is responsible for similar activity nationwide.
The Sheriff’s Office Detective Bureau became involved in the investigation after being notified by the victim’s financial institution, who reported that more than $20,000 had been taken from the victim’s account.
Further investigation revealed that the victim had her purse stolen from her vehicle earlier in the day. Once she realized that her purse had been stolen, the victim cancelled her checks and credit cards but her identification was also in the purse, and the suspect then used her identification (which was a close likeness) to make withdrawals from her account. The woman's hometown in Westchester has not been released,
After stealing the purse, the suspect allegedly drove to Dutchess County and used the victim’s identification to withdraw money at six different branches of the financial institution. Further investigation has also revealed that the suspect used stolen plates on their vehicle to avoid detection.
The “Felony Lane Gang” is a well-organized group that has operated for years throughout the U.S. and stolen millions of dollars. There is currently a Task Force set up to investigate this group, and more information on the group and Task Force can be found at by clicking here.
In addition the Sheriff’s Office would like to offer the following tips to help avoid becoming victimized by these criminals:
- Always lock your vehicles. In some cases the vehicles were forcibly entered, but in some the thieves simply opened an unlocked door. Lock your door and don’t make it easy for them.
- Never leave your purse or identification in your vehicle.
- Many of the larcenies from vehicles were committed in public parking lots like gyms and shopping centers. Follow the same precautions as you would at home, and DO NOT assume that you can’t be victimized if you are parked in a public place.
- If your vehicle has been broken into contact the Sheriff’s Office immediately.
- If you notice that a license plate has been taken from your vehicle contact the Sheriff’s Office immediately.
- If your documents and/or are identification are stolen contact your financial institution immediately, and also contact the credit bureau and put a fraud alert on your accounts.
- If you see something suspicious, say something.
Accompanying this story is a photo of the female suspect in this larceny, and anyone who may recognize her or have further information is urged to contact Dutchess County Sheriff's Office detectives at 845-486-3820.
Anyone with information can also contact the Sheriff’s Office via the tipline at 845-605-CLUE (2583) or firstname.lastname@example.org, and all tips will be kept confidential.
Check back to Daily Voice for updates as the investigation continues.
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