WALKER, Mich. — In West Michigan, counterfeit money scams come in waves. Police say it’s very common during the holidays and around the start of a new year.
That’s why the Walker Police Department is partnering with the Kent County Sheriff’s Department and a representative from the U.S. Secret Service for an educational seminar.
Police say there’s really no rhyme or reason to it but at least once a year they see an increase in counterfeit cash circulating around the business corridor on Alpine Avenue.
They say the seminar is a good way to learn how to spot a fake.
Walker police say counterfeit money is not a big problem but it is a persistent one. They say these types of scams can sometimes be linked to a group of organized criminals that are part of a larger network.
Many businesses have counterfeit detection pens which are a good first step but shouldn’t be the only method used to identify bogus money. Touch and feel the bill—fake money doesn’t have the crisp money feel or slightly raised ink of real cash.
“If you have somebody who comes in, maybe they buy, you know, a pop, a pack of gum, a small fry through the drive-thru, and they want to pay with $100, take some time to look at that. Because what they're trying to do is get the most real money back in change," said Mitch Harkema, Community Outreach Officer with Walker police.
Police say a characteristic they’ve seen often on counterfeit money is the words, “For motion picture use.” You can also hold the bill up to the light to look for a watermark that’s a replica of the face on the bill.
The counterfeit money and scam awareness seminar is next Thursday, Jan. 26 from 4 to 5:30 p.m. at Walker City Hall. It is open to the public. If you are planning to go you are asked to RSVP to email@example.com.
For more information, click here.
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