Over the last few weeks, the Grand Junction Police Department has seen an increase in reports involving counterfeit money. Generally, we’re seeing counterfeit $100, $50, and $20 bills, being passed at fast food establishments, auto supply stores, and grocery stores. However, all businesses should be aware of this trend and should be alert to any transaction that seems suspicious.
Counterfeit bills are often slightly smaller than real bills, and they’re typically printed on paper that feels different than genuine currency. Also, denominations that are missing the security strip or watermark are likely fake. To learn more about the security features found in bills of various denominations, go to www.uscurrency.gov.
Here is an image of a fake $100 bill recently seized as evidence by the Grand Junction Police Department:
If someone tries to pass suspected counterfeit money at your business, retain the bill(s) and call non-emergency dispatch at (970)242-6707. If you feel safe doing so, ask the person that passed the money to stay on scene until an officer arrives; sometimes, the person passing the currency is unaware that it’s fake, and is willing to be cooperative with an investigation. If you feel uneasy, let the subject leave. If the person doesn’t want to stay on scene, you should never try to detain them. If they leave, try to be a good witness. Get a good description of the person, and information on any vehicle with which they may be associated.
The best defense against crimes of fraud is public awareness and education. Please be sure to share this with anyone you know that deals with cash transactions in our community. If you find yourself in possession of currency that you believe is not authentic, call non-emergency dispatch at (970)242-6707, and request to speak with an officer.