WESTPORT, Conn. — Westport officers busted three New York men on identity theft and forgery charges who were found with $74,000 worth of fake or fraudulent checks, police said.
The incident began at about 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 12, when a Westport police detective in the area of Post Road East and Bulkley Avenue investigating an unrelated incident noticed a silver vehicle bearing out-of-state plates, police said.
The detective watched the vehicle and its occupants from a distance and saw the passengers get out of the vehicle and walk in one direction while the vehicle began to drive away in another direction, police said. This heightened his suspicion and other units responded to the area, police said.
All three occupants were eventually stopped and an investigation was initiated, police said.
The three men had different stories about why they were in Westport that could not be corroborated, police said.
Through the investigation, officers found and seized eight checks totaling over $74,000 from the vehicle and the occupants, police said. All of the checks were either stolen and/or fraudulent.
The following suspects were arrested:
- Alphonso D. Stewart, 31, of 225 Division Ave., Apt 2G, Brooklyn, N.Y.;
- Maliki Cottrell, 28, of 11 Van Buren St #2, Yonkers, N.Y.; and
- Rashon Perkins, 27, of 18 Sedgrics Ave., the Bronx, N.Y.
All three are charged with the following crimes:
- 14 counts of third-degree forgery;
- first-degree conspiracy to commit larceny; and
- first-degree identity theft.
Additionally, Cottrell was charged with third-degree identity theft and Interfering with an officer because he had additional fake IDs in his possession, police said.
Each was held $50,000 bond at the Westport Police Department.