Washington Co. Sheriff: Jail inmate stole fellow inmate's identity

An inmate at the Washington County Jail is facing more criminal charges in connection with the identity theft of a fellow inmate. 

According to the sheriff's office, the victim in the case realized that 36 unauthorized phone calls - or about $100 worth - had been made using his prepaid account and PIN number between October 14 and October 20. 

Capt. Marty Schulteis said inmates at the Washington County Jail are given an account number and PIN number for making phone calls. Relatives or friends can load money into an inmate's account.

Schulteis said he doesn't recall another case of identity theft within the confines of the jail. 

"We have fights at the jail, like between inmates," the Captain said. "But when you talk about a fraud case, that's not terribly common, that happening inside a correctional facility." 

Schulteis said the alleged fraudster was already being held at the jail for a probation violation. He's now also facing charges of identity theft. 

The state statute on identity theft reads: 

"Whoever for any of the following purposes intentionally uses, attempts to use, or possesses with intent to use any identifying information or identification document of any entity without the authorization or consent of the entity, and by representing that the person is the entity or is acting with the authorization or consent of entity to obtain credit, money, good, services, or anything else of value or benefit. Also included in this is any other vices unique to or is assigned to or belongs to an entity and is intended to be used to access services, funds, or benefits of any kind to which entity is entitled.”

"It was a personal ID number used for goods or services, and by using that number the (suspect) stole the identity of the individual," Schulteis said. 

The 32-year old male from Hartford, who allegedly stole the other inmate's identity, declined to speak with investigators. 

But Schulteis said jail phone records and surveillance video made it easy to identify him as a suspect. 

"It wasn't really a tough case to crack," he joked. 

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