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Felon uses imprisoned man’s ID to buy gift cards, which he traded for drugs

Paroled felon Chad Falk used the identity of an imprisoned acquaintance to get a Capital One credit card, which financed gift cards he traded for methamphetamine.

KENTWOOD, Mich — A Kentwood man who stole the identity of an acquaintance while that man was in prison is heading there himself.

Chad Michael Falk used the other man’s identity to get a credit card, which was used to buy gift cards Falk then traded for methamphetamine, court records show.

A judge this week sentenced Falk to between 5-20 years for a methamphetamine conviction and 2-5 years for identity theft.

A co-defendant, 33-year-old Chelsea Anne Cica, was earlier placed on probation.

Falk, 36, lived at the same address as the man whose identity he stole, court records show. Police say he and Cica used that man’s identity to obtain a Capital One credit card. 

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When that man returned home after getting out of prison, “he was notified by Capital One credit card services that he owed them $23,334.04,’’ a detective wrote in a probable cause affidavit. He learned the card was activated while he was in prison for a 2018 methamphetamine conviction in Montcalm County.

Cica told police she applied for the credit card “because she needed money.’’

Falk activated the card in December of 2018 and the two used it to buy prepaid gift cards at Meijer and Walmart, court records show. The gift cards were used or traded to buy methamphetamine, a detective wrote in a probable cause affidavit. 

Cica called Capital One numerous times to check on the available credit. The card was even used to bond her out of jail in Ohio after she was arrested for drugs, court records show.

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Falk admitted to activating the card and representing himself as the victim, even using the man’s driver’s license and a utility bill for identification purposes, court records show.

“The call log of Capital One shows that Falk called using his cell phone approximately 50 times, checking the credit card’s available credit limit,’’ a Kentwood detective wrote.

Falk was arrested in January of 2019 during a search of his home on Brookmark Street near Kalamazoo Avenue SE.

He was on parole for property crimes in Kent County, including second-degree home invasion. Terms of parole required that he not use alcohol or illegal drugs.

Police recovered a pint of alcohol, a methamphetamine pipe, nine grams of crystal methamphetamine along with Adderall and Xanax pills, court records show.

Falk “admitted to selling a gram or two of crystal meth a week to friends when they ran out,’’ according to court records.


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